Today we actually went to a theater to see a film, our first since the Covid epidemic hit nearly 2 years ago. Our nephew had called gushing about the new version of Dune, saying we had to see it. So we did, in a nearly deserted theater. The “social distancing” was excellent. The film, less so.
I am not unhappy I saw the retelling of the familiar Dune story, but this version will not be my favorite depiction of Frank Herbert’s Game-of-Thrones-in-space. I rank it lower than both the original and the made-for-TV miniseries versions.
The casting was uneven and very PC, the young man playing Paul lacked gravitas, whereas the woman playing his mother did a decent job but appeared too young to have a son Paul’s age. Momoa was good as Duncan Idaho and the man playing the Duke was good too. Some of the visuals were well imagined and executed, and I liked the ‘thopters’ based on dragonflies.
I had planned to buy a CD of this version but will wait for part 2 to be made and buy the two as a set when the price goes down. It is part of the Dune canon, but for me a lesser part.
Minor quibbles: it was visually dark and the actors mumbled too much. One review I read had an observation I wish were original with me (but isn’t). It said the Fremen all appeared to be people of color and that makes Paul just another “white savior” showing up to liberate them.