So yesterday a buddy asked – “You like Dune I know – what about the movie, you like it? For reference he was referring to the 1984 David Lynch movie version of Dune that has been debated by Frank Herbert fans for years.
I had to pause to give this some good thought.
I love Frank Herbert’s 1965 opus Dune along with all the sequels he wrote. This book and the 5 additional ones he wrote are clearly desert island books for me in every way. I love this universe so much that I am able to enjoy the 11 prequels/sequels that his son has written with Kevin Anderson (Although they define schmaltzy sci-fi writing). I truly love these books and all the characters and story lines that go through them.
However, he did not ask that, he asked about the movie. And the simple answer after owning at least 4 copies (Ranging from theatrical release to director’s cut to vhs to laser disc to blu-ray) and seeing this probably close to 100 times is NO.
For years I defended this based on the principal that it was Dune and all things Dune must be somewhat good but the truth is David Lynch butchered this. His version is just as bad as the theatrical version that he so vehemently did not want to be associated with. Mr. Lynch took a great book and turned it into one big bad layered POS with no shape or purpose. The story is destroyed for the sake of visuals and the effects are absolute rubbish (Remember by 1980 we had all seen The Empire Strikes Back and that just destroys Dune visually in every way). David Lynch fucked this movie up big time as well with the overall bad casting except for maybe 2 parts. He took a book with a dense 544 pages and instead of just focusing on a few simpler story lines (As we know you could not make a movie covering that much) he focused on nothing, ala a normal David Lynch film.
This is not another form of art but simply one man destroying another mans’. Movies are simply like magic shows, they might have a lot of showmanship but they lack soul, humanity and scope and without those you will never be art in my book.