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‘Dune’ Review: The Most Sucessfully Ambitious Movie in the Last Decade

2021 Dune review
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Dune is the definition of a movie you need to see in theaters.

It’s been a very long time since a movie tried to do something as ambitious as Dune. There have been some ambitious Marvel and DC superhero films, but all of them had a very established audience base through years of never-ending content. Batman Begins bravely took superhero films to a new height, but there were already millions upon millions of Batman fans around the world, eagerly awaiting the movie. Dune is taking an incredibly popular one-time 1965 science-fiction novel and one-time 1984 movie, and trying to create an entirely brand new movie universe from complete scratch.

There is a tremendous amount of world-building in Denis Villeneuve’s movie version of Dune. As the movie unfolds, a new layer of world-building unfolds. Every world, monster, weapon, language, all have deep lore. If there is one key criticism of the movie though, it’s that there’s so much world-building that it creates a very slow pace during the beginning of the movie. It’s easy to understand why the movie moves slowly in the beginning, but it makes the 2 hours 35-minute movie feel like one. The most amazing part about it though, is the fact that you can clearly see ‘Dune’ is barely scratching the surface in terms of what it’s bringing to the table.

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The experience of watching Dune is one that I haven’t experienced since 2001 when watching The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. The movie is doing so much and creating so much, that a sequel just becomes absolutely necessary. That sheer fact might be the scariest part about Dune – it’s a $165 million budget sequel-needing movie that’s being dual-released during a pandemic. There have been some incredible original blockbusters throughout the years that managed to generate enormous box office revenue like Inception and Interstellar, so it’s not an impossible task. The biggest difference in this scenario is the timing and situation. This isn’t a time-tested James Bond movie being released during a pandemic, it’s a sci-fi movie based on a book that most people in this generation have never heard of.

Make no mistake, Dune is a movie I would highly recommend people to see – especially in theaters. It’s not a perfect movie because of some pacing issues, but it’s a fantastic movie. There are some great performances, amazing cinematography, and there’s just so much beautiful originality. Every little nuance is crafted with such detail, making sure the novels are being adapted with justice. Movies like this don’t come around often, and it would be a disservice to the progression of the film industry to not see this movie in theaters.

Grade: A+

What do you think?