Dune: Movie Review

Dune: Movie Review

Isabelle A., Editor


I would like to begin by saying I am not analyzing the movie in regard to the books. This is a review only considering the movie. 

My rating for this movie would be a 9/10. While this movie has a few negative aspects, the pros outweigh the cons. 

My main critique of this movie is the slow pace. This movie only covers half of the first book because the director did not want to squish the whole plot into one movie. And while this may make the story easier to follow, it also makes the movie tiring and even boring at times, causing many people to drift off or reach for their phones.  The two-and-a-half-hour movie seemed to drag on with its vast, dry deserts and slow plot progression. Though meant to be “Part One” of a many-part series, it felt less like a beginning and more like an introduction. While I planned to see it in theaters, I do not regret watching it on HBO Max since the special effects and action scenes were fewer than expected for such a highly anticipated sci-fi/adventure movie. 

Despite this, I enjoyed the movie immensely. 

Although lacking in an abundance of action, the mystical aspect piqued my interest. For example, the mysterious Bene Gesserit, a corrupt, religious group of women with superhuman powers was engaging. Paul Atreides, played by Timothee Chalamet, was also very interesting as the main character, whose mother is part of the Bene Gesserit and grooms him to become “The One.” This parentage bestows Paul with the “Voice,” granting him the ability to use mind control like the Bene Gesserit. I enjoyed its rendering in regard to the chilling quality of the voice along with the reactions of those it was used upon. In addition to the mysticism, the world-building is complex and the plot is deeply layered, surrounded by suspense and intrigue.

A point in the movie’s favor was the truly amazing cast, which consists of more A-listers such as Zendaya, Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Jason Momoa, Josh Brolin, and Dave Bautista — definitely an expensive cast. The hype surrounding the movie was mainly for Timothee Chalamet and Zendaya, so it was slightly disappointing when Zendaya only appeared in the last 15 minutes of the movie. However, the introductory feature of the movie implies she will have a larger role in “Part Two” which has already been given the green light by Legendary Entertainment.

Timothee Chalamet’s acting was an important ingredient in holding the movie together. In otherworldly movies like this one, realistic responses to scenarios are difficult to replicate. But Chalamet’s outstanding acting gave a vivid impression of the movie’s events. 

Two specific scenes featuring Chalamet stood out to me. The first was the scene where the audience is first introduced to Bene Gesserit. Paul places his hand in a box of pain while a poison needle is held at his throat. The raw pain and determination which Chalamet portrayed presented a strikingly realistic depiction that allowed the audience to sympathize with the character. Another part that drew my attention was Chalamet’s characterization of Paul when he received visions. The authentic intensity of his portrayal expressed the supernatural element in a convincing light.

The imagery and CGI were stunning as well, immersing the audience in the movie. The intricate detailing on the Sandworm and the ships was both impressive and fascinating. Though, what caught my eye was the terrifying yet stellar object size comparison. The zoomed-out shots of the scenes instilled the substantiality of the film’s events.If you have a short attention span and are not concentrating on the movie, it is likely you will not know what is going on nor enjoy the movie properly. Nonetheless, if you can focus, Dune was truly phenomenal and I would definitely recommend it.