Review: “Dune” is star-studded, visually-compelling cinematic masterpiece


Courtesy of EPK.TV

Based upon the novel of the same name, “Dune” follows Paul Atreides (Timothee Chalamet) as he travels to the most dangerous planet in the universe. “Dune” is streaming now on HBO Max.

Denis Villeneuve’s retelling of Frank Herbert’s Sci-Fi classic “Dune” is a cinematic masterpiece. With stunning imagery and sound that envelops you, it’s a necessity to see a film of this scale on the big screen. The classic space opera tells the story of messiah-like character Paul Atreides and his family after they take control of the planet Arrakis, also known as Dune.After the family completes the transfer of power from the House Harkonen, our protagonist  Paul, is thrown into a diplomatic conflict that is as dangerous as it is tragic. 

The movie opens with  a sequence narrated by Zendaya’s Fremen character, Chani, who is native to the planet Arrakis. She says, “My planet Arrakis is so beautiful when the sun is low. Rolling over the sands, you can see the spice in the air.” After a pause, she continues, “At nightfall the spice harvesters land.” 

We then see the brutal truth about Arrakis. Outsiders devastate the planet, harvesting the hallucinogenic drug “spice” from the planet and committing violent acts against the Fremen. We are then launched into the story of two houses on the brink of a political crisis. 

Villeneuve translates the content from the novel onto the big screen seamlessly. Despite the novel being dense and often confusing, Villenueve weaves in terminology and context flawlessly. “Dune” is a movie that should have been impossible, but with a $165 million price tag, Villeneuve was able to capture the scale of such a story elegantly. 

With a star-studded cast, “Dune” was one of the most highly anticipated films of the year. “Call Me By Your Name” star Timothee Chalamet portrays Paul Atreides and “Spiderman: Homecoming” co-star Zendaya plays Chani. Castmates include: Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Josh Brolin, Jason Momoa and Stellan Skarsgård. 

Each shot of the film was carefully crafted with the intention to provide outstanding  visuals alongside a compelling story. Chalamet takes his role seriously, perfectly emulating the inner conflict that young Paul Atreides faces in the book. Skarsgård is a sinister villain who dominates any scene that he’s in. Standout characters from the film that were impossible to dislike  were Momoa’s Duncan Idaho and Sharon Duncan-Brewster’s Liet Kynes. These characters were genuine and complex with more than meets the eye. 

Hans Zimemer masterfully devised the film’s composition and delivered a brilliant score. The score combined with fantastic set pieces that felt like they were right from the book and larger than life, explosive battle scenes and tactful fight sequences made “Dune” a movie to remember. The result of combining the score with the fantastic set pieces brought scenes from the book to life. The explosive battle scenes and tactful fight sequences made “Dune” a movie to remember.

Rating: 5 goats out of 5