Film Reviews Cat

Dune (1984)


The movie “Dune” is based on the 1965 sci-fi novel written by Frank Herbert. The entire premise of this story is that a Messiah-like young man has to save the world from the evil galactic emperor.

Firstly, I really enjoy the story itself because it is extremely well written by Frank Herbert. However, this 1984 film adaptation, from  novel to a film format, is extremely weak at best. Everything about this film is totally campy, ridiculous, and ugly. The costumes that the actors are wearing are plain stupidity to the point that even good dialogue couldn’t help this movie anymore. I really wonder if they couldn’t come up with better costumes. I mean, the original “Star Wars” costumes looked way better than this, and that was filmed in the 1970’s. Maybe they didn’t have enough budget to create decent costume designs. However, the set design is also really bad. And to be honest I don’t think that at any given time I could immerse myself into the “Dune” setting because of the costume and set design. 

The dialogue has the same problem because it feels boring, melodramatic, and lazy. And when you combine this with the rest it looks extremely campy to the point that this might be the biggest cringe movie of the 20th century. Moreover, the visuals are also contributing to this ‘super cringe’ experience. However, this is not uncommon for a movie that has to heavily rely on ‘futuristic’ visuals. During the early 2000’s there were numerous movies which used CGI that looked absolutely terrible. And we can’t blame the filmmakers of “Dune” too much for this either. It is technological progress that makes the older CGI movies look like total crap. One can make the argument that; it was good for its time. However, today we need a new version of that same movie because one can’t watch the 1984 movie anymore. This itself is a separate topic to discuss because the following question arises: when is a movie technologically outdated? Moreover, every year such movies could be perceived as worse compared to the year before. To be honest, I didn’t give “Dune” a 4.0/10 because of the ‘bad’ visual effects because I kept this in mind before watching the film. However, what got to me was the melodramatic and campy acting. If the set design is terrible, and the dialogue text is bad as well then at least act like a good actor. Meaning, try at least to be somewhat convincing and realistic, but most of the main actors were not really into it it seems. Everything felt unconvincing because it was flat, melodramatic, or totally ridiculous. Additionally, there were a few scenes that were unnecessary and didn’t add anything to the story. 

This was the overall issue with the plot structure as well because it felt extremely jumpy without giving the audience a well paced story. As if they were in a rush to tell this epic story. And generally I would assume that this is nearly impossible given the length of this film which is 2H 17min long. Maybe they should have created a mini-series instead, or established a movie trilogy. What this basically means is that almost everything about this movie is totally off. I can see the potential for a good “Dune” movie. However, in my opinion one should not watch this one if you have the ability to read the book. This might be the case with a bunch of different movies. However, I really think that this movie (1984) takes too much away from the story itself as it was originally intended to be ‘consumed’. Therefore, do yourself a big favor and don’t watch this film at all. Stay away from it and read the book, or look for another tv, or movie rendition. This month I will go and watch “Dune” (2021), if you have the opportunity to do the same then I already can advise you to watch that rendition instead of this one.  

Directed by 

David Lynch

Writing Credits  

Frank Herbert(novel)
David Lynch(screenplay)


Francesca AnnisLady Jessica
Leonardo CiminoThe Baron’s Doctor
Brad DourifPiter De Vries
José FerrerPadishah Emperor Shaddam IV
Linda HuntShadout Mapes
Freddie JonesThufir Hawat
Richard JordanDuncan Idaho
Kyle MacLachlanPaul Atreides
Virginia MadsenPrincess Irulan
Silvana ManganoReverend Mother Ramallo
Everett McGillStilgar
Kenneth McMillanBaron Vladimir Harkonnen
Jack NanceNefud
Siân PhillipsReverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam (as Sian Phillips)
Jürgen ProchnowDuke Leto Atreides
Paul L. SmithThe Beast Rabban (as Paul Smith)
Patrick StewartGurney Halleck
StingFeyd Rautha
Dean StockwellDoctor Wellington Yueh
Max von SydowDoctor Kynes (as Max Von Sydow)
Alicia WittAlia (as Alicia Roanne Witt)
Sean YoungChani
Danny CorkillOrlop
Honorato MagaloniOtheym (as Honorato Magalone)
Judd OmenJamis
Molly WrynHarah

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