DUNE

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DUNE

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Postby movieartman » Wed Sep 09, 2020 11:30 am

Thread for discussion of the novels & their various adaptations.

1st full trailer for the upcoming film by Denis Villeneuve (Arrival, Blade Runner 2049, Sicario)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9xhJrPXop4

Surprised how much it resembles the 1984 film but it does look damn good & the cast is fantastic.

I watched the 84 film a few weeks ago for the first time and was suprised how much I liked it. Only major flaws for me was Paul's time with the Freman & romance with Chani was massively rushed and the Harkonnens mostly seemed really out of place and the interior sets for their homeworld seemed cheap & garish.

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Postby robersora » Wed Sep 09, 2020 3:30 pm

^
the trailer makes it look like real bad Hollywood de jour, but I hope that's just due to the (horrible) marketing and trust that Denis Villeneuve creates another great movie. After all, I for one really enjoyed Blade Runner 2049, even if his mega self-serious and hyper aesthetic style is something one needs to be in the mood in.
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Postby silvermoonlight » Wed Sep 09, 2020 4:38 pm

My biggest issue with this is the colour pallet its so bland and there is no sense of royal grader or epic feel or rich colour, also them turning the bad guys in to white looking weird sub humans is a bad choice and really lazy and undermines the books to me and the other adaptation which have always showed the specialist army as humans its just implied they were trained to deal with harsh weather conditions. As from what I remember it's only the fremen who have glowing eyes due to spice use.

I also don't like them giving the worms a filter jaw like a whale it really takes away how terrifying these things are and that they can come up from know where and eat whole spice mining factories and the teeth and ridgeback look sold that in both the 80's and Dune miniseries.

Also, the lack of showing any real female characters outside the love interest is troubling as women play a huge role in this universe and now I know its by the same guy who did Blade Runner 2049 it makes me very nervous though this does have different scriptwriters to that film and one was on Godzilla king of the monsters the other on Tom Cruise's mummy so I guess it could go either way.
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Postby Justacrazyguy » Wed Sep 09, 2020 5:35 pm

As someone that sort of enjoys the 1984 movie (bring a few friends and watch it together, it's a fun time) I don't know what to think about this movie.
Blade Runner 2049 was great but the trailer for this movie is so normal. Nothing stands out.
Probably will go see it anyway, there is still a good chance it'll be good enough for at least one watch at the cinema.
Last edited by Justacrazyguy on Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Zusuchan » Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:33 am

It looks suitably epic and well done, though the trailer style does give off ''standard Hollywood epic'' vibes to an uncomfortable degree. The cast is wonderful, though and Villeneuve has proved his worth as an director with some of the last decade's best stuff and has stated his love for Herbert's book, so I'm excited and hoping the trailer style and all is just thanks to WB attempting to market it to the widest possible audience. Making the Harkonnens some kind of pale dudes is a strange adaptation choice that looks suspiciously like the film attempting to tell us who exactly the bad guys are, but then again Baron Vladimir isn't obese to the point of caricature, which is a plus.
movieartman wrote:
Only major flaws for me was Paul's time with the Freman & romance with Chani was massively rushed and the Harkonnens mostly seemed really out of place and the interior sets for their homeworld seemed cheap & garish.

It also condensed several important plot points and treated Paul like an actual messiah, which is a pretty big deviation from canon and one of Herbert's entire themes. But, yeah, it wasn't that bad.
silvermoonlight wrote:
Also, the lack of showing any real female characters outside the love interest is troubling as women play a huge role in this universe

According to Villeneuve and Rebecca Ferguson, the character arcs for much of the women were ''brought up to a new level'' and Liet-Kynes has even been gender-bended. It's also better at the screenwriting front, since Villeneuve is actually a co-writer and no-one worked on that Godzilla film. Jon Spaiths did work on that awful Cruise film and hasn't given us anything remotely close to good, while how good a screenwriter Eric Roth is is a matter of contention. But I'm cautiously optimistic.

At the end of the day, I'm looking forward to this, but won't assume that it'll be a giant masterpiece, probably just a really great movie.

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Postby silvermoonlight » Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:47 am

View Original PostZusuchan wrote:According to Villeneuve and Rebecca Ferguson, the character arcs for much of the women were ''brought up to a new level'' and Liet-Kynes has even been gender-bended. It's also better at the screenwriting front, since Villeneuve is actually a co-writer and no-one worked on that Godzilla film. Jon Spaiths did work on that awful Cruise film and hasn't given us anything remotely close to good, while how good a screenwriter Eric Roth is is a matter of contention. But I'm cautiously optimistic.


The only reason I'm bringing this up is more with regard to Lady Jessica Paul's mother as I don't want her to get the same treatment that Thor's mother got in Marvel where she was shown as feeble couldn't fight when Frigga in the mythology was bad ass and a warrior in her own right.

SPOILER: Show
The reason I'm drawing this line is everyone told Jessica in the book have a girl don't have a boy because a boy will cause problems but Jessica goes no sorry and has a boy anyway defying everyone (As women in that universe have total control over the unborn child's gender in the womb) And she breaks the rules again with the unborn Alia though that ones more tragic but its still her choice.

This one may not be in there depending on where their going with the Baron which I hope stays a rapist and sexual predator but not a gay man like in the books (As the author did not like homosexuality or his gay son in real life from what I've heard) as Bene Gesserit Reverend Mother gave him sickness and obesity to spite him after he raped her as he needed her to sire an heir as their first failed and the second child which Bene gave birth to is Jessica. Which I view as really important as Jessica has none of her fathers traits and this utterly breaks the trope that evil parents sire evil children by default
Last edited by silvermoonlight on Fri Sep 11, 2020 8:10 am, edited 7 times in total.
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Postby Lavinius » Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:49 am

I absolutely hate the artstyle. Why is everything so dreary, so dark, so monochrome? That worked in Blade Runner's dead, melancholy future, that's not going to work in Dune's classically decadent Imperium. The Imperium should look like the Ottoman Empire or Renaissance Germany, glittering with gold and slithering with silk.
Not only is this utterly disappointing, it misses on the opportunity to create a visual contrast between the poor, puritanical Fremen and the extravagant Imperials. They've even made the agricultural planet Caladan a dreary, sterile affair, rather than showing off its greenness & fertility to contrast it with Arrakis.

Of course I'm also far from pleased with all the action-film like camerwork, explosions &c.

Beyond that it's difficult to judge. Probably the trailer is badly edited and unrepresentative of the tone of the film. I personally don't have too much faith in Villeneuve- Blade Runner 2049 was surprisingly decent, but I'm not particularly fond of it. The only promising thing I can see about this is that the majority of the dialogue in the trailer seems taken directly from the book.

View Original PostZusuchan wrote:Making the Harkonnens some kind of pale dudes is a strange adaptation choice that looks suspiciously like the film attempting to tell us who exactly the bad guys are, but then again Baron Vladimir isn't obese to the point of caricature, which is a plus.

I think those might be meant to be the Sardaukar, reimagined as some sort of genetically engineered freaks. Which would completely miss the point of them, which is that they're a marginal population from a wild planet used as ultraloyal soldiers (cf. the Varangian Guard), and that they've been debased in overconfidence (it's mentioned that Shaddam has doubled the size of their ranks, naively thinking this will double his strength when it will compromise discipline). They're explicitly paralleled to the Fremen, also a marginal population from a wild planet used as ultraloyal soldiers. But those thematics doesn't work if they're going to have them be genetically engineered freaks.

As for the latter point, Vlad is supposed to be obese to the point of caricature, and is so deliberately, as a Weird Flex- he's fat, while his slaves are starving, and he knows how uncomfortable it makes you, but you can't do anything about it, because he's the one with the power and you're not~
Though if they make him not quite so fat so that it looks reasonable on screen and the actor can play him more naturally, I'm not complaining.
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Postby Zusuchan » Thu Sep 10, 2020 10:27 am

silvermoonlight wrote:
The only reason I'm bringing this up is more with regard to Lady Jessica Paul's mother as I don't want her to the same treatment that Thor's mother got in Marvel where she was shown as feeble couldn't fight when Frigga in the mythology was bad ass and a warrior in her own right.

Villeneuve has also explicitly stated that Lady Jessica and the entirety of the Bene Gesserit are even more of ''warrior priestesses'' than they were in the book, so I wouldn't worry about that.
SPOILER: Show
This one may not be in there depending on where their going with the Baron which I hope stays a rapist and sexual predator but not gay man like in the books (As the author did not like homosexuality or his gay son in real life from what I've heard) as Bene Gesserit Reverend Mother gave him sickness and obesity to spite him after he raped her as he needed her to sire an heir as their first failed and the second child which Bene gave birth to is Jessica. Which I view as really important as Jessica has none of her fathers traits and this utterly breaks the trope that evil parents sire evil children by default

I too hope that this stays the same-it is an important part of Jessica's character, the background, other characters and themes.

Lavinius wrote:
I think those might be meant to be the Sardaukar, reimagined as some sort of genetically engineered freaks.

Vladimir and Rabban were pale too. Granted, it could be an issue of camera placement/lighting with Vladimir, (who also was obscured by what seems to be fog or something like it) but Rabban clearly was pale in the trailer, so I incline to think Vladimir will be too.
Though if they make him not quite so fat so that it looks reasonable on screen and the actor can play him more naturally, I'm not complaining.

That's what I meant. If he were of a similar physiological disposition as he was in the book, it would look really weird (in a bad way) on the screen. And the idea of making Vladimir less of an Objectively Evil Person: Caricature Version than he was in the book is good in my eyes-he'd still have to be a bastard with very little, if any, redemptive qualities, but it would make him slightly easier to realize and depict on the screen without the audience rolling their eyes at him. And when it comes to the reason Vladimir is fat, then while your point is potentially right, the novel seems to suggest it's due to some sort of genetic disease. Of course, I've only read it once and that was a long time ago, so I may be wrong.

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Postby Lavinius » Thu Sep 10, 2020 11:02 am

View Original PostZusuchan wrote:Vladimir and Rabban were pale too. Granted, it could be an issue of camera placement/lighting with Vladimir, (who also was obscured by what seems to be fog or something like it) but Rabban clearly was pale in the trailer, so I incline to think Vladimir will be too.

If they're Harkonnens I guess that's a bit better- I saw something on 4chan citing some document explaining that the Harkonnens are supposed to be adapted to the cold Geidi Prime climate. Honestly, I'd think it'd be thematically better not to dehumanize the Harkonnen troops, but seeing as Herbert simply makes them out to be drug-addicted sadists as much as he pays them any attention at all, it's not really unfaithful.

That's what I meant. If he were of a similar physiological disposition as he was in the book, it would look really weird (in a bad way) on the screen. And the idea of making Vladimir less of an Objectively Evil Person: Caricature Version than he was in the book is good in my eyes-he'd still have to be a bastard with very little, if any, redemptive qualities, but it would make him slightly easier to realize and depict on the screen without the audience rolling their eyes at him. And when it comes to the reason Vladimir is fat, then while your point is potentially right, the novel seems to suggest it's due to some sort of genetic disease. Of course, I've only read it once and that was a long time ago, so I may be wrong.

Ja, I get what you mean- none of the villains are at all sympathetic. Shaddam is at least not sadistic, but he's still utterly morally pathetic and it looks like they're not going to show him or Irulan until the second film. They seriously could try to make Feyd somewhat sympathetic, at least- he's the character most ripe for it.

Regarding Vlad, iirc Countess Fenring notes in the gladiator chapter that he used to be fit like Feyd and that he's let himself grow fat.
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Postby Zusuchan » Fri Sep 11, 2020 7:09 am

Lavinius:
I don't know that we necessarily need the villains to be sympathetic, it's just that I feel that Vladimir especially is basically every stereotype of what people considered to be evil in the 1960s rolled into one and making him slightly more realistic of a character is good, I think.
Regarding Vlad, iirc Countess Fenring notes in the gladiator chapter that he used to be fit like Feyd and that he's let himself grow fat.

Well, guess I was wrong. Thanks for clearing this up for me.

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Postby Gendo'sPapa » Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:52 pm

I'm a life long DUNE fan and have read the entire series twice - the Frank Herbert books that is, the books written after his death aren't DUNE - and the original novel countless times so I'll be the person saying I'm suitably impressed and excited by the movie. I trust Denis Villeneuve and am positive he'll deliver a great movie.

I do wish they had cast Middle Eastern actors to play the Fremen though... that doesn't sit right with me.

Anywho, Warner Brothers just shifted WONDER WOMAN 1984 back to Christmas day, a mere week after DUNE's release date, and even with all the dumb choices they've made lately I don't see them having their two mega-expensive franchise blockbusters compete in theaters at the same time during a period when theatrical attendance in the US will be down like 75 to 90%.

If WB shifts DUNE back six months or even a year mere days after they premiered the trailer I don't know if I'll be able to stop myself from giggling. This musical chairs they and Disney are doing with their blockbuster during a pandemic - move Movie X back another three weeks, things will be much different by then - is ridiculous.

Who knew when this all started that Paramount and Sony would be the shining examples of smart studio thinking.
They smartly just yeeted all their 2020 movies back a year and will decide what else needs to be done when the time comes.

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Postby Lavinius » Thu Oct 15, 2020 6:50 am

I do wish they had cast Middle Eastern actors to play the Fremen though... that doesn't sit right with me.

There isn't any particular reason to imagine that the Fremen must be ethnically Middle Eastern any more than they should be ethnically Circassian or ethnically Japanese (in truth, there's no reason to imagine that anyone 20,000 years in the future, adapted to hundreds of planets, should resemble any existing ethnicity anyway).
I also get the impression that they want to avoid being accused of promulgating a "white savior" narrative- by making the Fremen themselves white (and Kynes a black woman), they can dodge that substantially. I'm going to guess also that the discussion of metaphysical sex differences, with the Kwisatz Haderach as an Adam Qadmon spiritual hermaphrodite, is going to be dropped also.

I don't imagine Villeneuve has a very nuanced understanding of the material anyway, e.g.
Other changes included altering some of the arcs of the female characters in the book... Lady Jessica was given a more expanded role as a soldier as well as being part of the Bene Gesserit, which the studio labeled as a "warrior priestess", comparing to the joking label of "space nun" that Villeneuve felt the book gave across.

I don't know about "arcs", but a whole point of the Bene Gesserit is that they're the expression of subtle female power in the context of a very sexist society like the Imperium. Subtle- they refrain from using their abilities as much as possible, so as not to draw attention. (Herbert may have given the wrong first impression by having Mohiam explain who they really are in the very first chapter.) If you replace this with some sort of action girl nonsense, you fuck up the whole social structure being depicted. Quite apart from me wondering what version of Leto would want his beloved to put herself in the line of fire any more than he'd want his son to. Moreover, this will severely dilute the contrast with the egalitarian Fremen, whose women are trained in combat, and whose equivalent of the Bene Gesserit- their Reverend Mothers- are openly powerful.

I said all that to seem professional, but I honestly I made this post just to say that I'm in awe that he could mistake an order of space seductresses for space nuns.

In any case, I don't follow the film industry, but I strongly get the impression that, with the delay, even if the film does turn a substantial profit, by then the financial interest & infrastructure for making the sequel will have evaporated.
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