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    I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby georgiedenbro » 13 Nov 2014 17:20

    Freakzilla wrote:Yeah, I understand how it's easier to use weirding modules but the hand to hand combat was one of the things I liked about it.

    How do you show differing skill levels? Easy, the way it was described in the books. The more skilled combatant wins.


    Yes, but in the books we knew why they won; in the case of Paul vs Jamis or even Paul vs Feyd, which are detailed fights, we don't just get a victor, we know the entire mental game of chess going on and who is the superior player. The book doesn't offer that specific a context for why Duncan or the Fremen can defeat Sardakaur, and we are left to our imagination. Even the awe expressed by others about the Sardaukar gives us a sense of their power. But a film can't use our imagination like that, and instead has to explicitly show in precisely what way one combatant is superior to another; otherwise we end up with an arbitrary "GI Joe" result where both sides have a seemingly powerful arsenal and the victor is declared by fiat at the end and we're supposed to accept that they somehow were better since they won. I, personally, find this type of 'power shenanigans' irritating to watch, where the power level of the two combatants isn't properly set up going in and the winner comes out at the end like a lottery number. Many action-oriented TV shows have made this mistake, where you don't really know the relative power-level of the participants, and even many superhero-type films. When the winner is just the person the script needed to be victorious it always feels hollow to me, and I don't think that would be a good thing for Dune, where real ability and skill are part of the general theme of the book.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Freakzilla » 13 Nov 2014 17:29

    They showed Jessica defeat Stilgar in the movie and it was plainly stated she was able to because of her weirding way of battle, which she obviously taught to Paul and agreed to theach the Fremen in exchange for santuary.

    Gurney and Duncan were Swordmasters, not mere soldiers. This was demonstrated by Gurney besting Paul in the training room on Caladan.

    The Fremen fighting prowess is pointed out and respected by both Gurney and Duncan and their desire to enlist their help.

    The weirding modules takes all that skill away and reduces it to the level of a technological advantage, like muskets against armored knights... or rifles against muskets, etc.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby georgiedenbro » 13 Nov 2014 17:36

    I know, it's not Dune. I like it, cinematically, and it avoids having to establish certain things fully, but if it were my movie I'd just do what the book says. If I were on set and had to pick my battles, though, this wouldn't have been one of them. It works for me on some level.

    Some of the other stuff added in is just dumb, so I'd have tried to get that removed first.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Naïve mind » 14 Nov 2014 02:45

    Freakzilla wrote:2. Bug Juice Boxes
    3. Heart Plugs
    4. Oil Showers
    5. Diseased Baron
    7. Cat Milking


    We're supposed to dislike the Harkonnens; that's why Herbert made him an obese homosexual in the book (which was probably pretty edgy in the 1960s). For whatever reason, Lynch amped that up by 500%. Maybe he felt that homosexuality by itself wasn't going to produce the same kind of visceral disgust in 1984. I'm not saying these were good decisions, but it's not hard to see why they were introduced.

    It would've been better if they'd had more scenes like this one (maybe a bit more understated) to help us 'hate' the Harkonnens.

    Freakzilla wrote:4. Paul's fight with Jamis
    5. Jamis' Funeral


    Those were filmed, though. You can find them on youtube, and they work really well, unlike most scenes that were cut.

    Freakzilla wrote:I'm sure I could think of several more of those, too. It's not so much that he added little things, it's that he left out good scenes and wasted a lot of time on stupid crap.


    Any movie telling the story in under three hours is going to have to do that, though.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Sam » 14 Nov 2014 04:55

    As long as we're talking about things that were cut, added or altered, there's an interesting twist to my tale. Last night I had the pleasure of watching Dune: The Alternative Edition Redux by pseudonymous fan-editor Spicediver. It's a total remix of the various extant versions of the film and bits of salvaged (but excellent) material gleaned from different sources. In many parts it's been cleaned up, restored and improved. Running just a hair under three hours in length, it is by far the best version of the movie I've ever seen.

    Obviously some things about Dune that are broken cannot be fixed. You can't remove the weirding modules and the Baron's still going to be diseased. Cat milking is still present, but I've had that bit grow on me over the years — much like rat that appears to be grafted onto the cat — and I'm fine with that. Some scenes were never filmed, so Paul and Chani's love relationship doesn't get the attention it deserves. Things like that. But if you're looking to see a Lynchian Dune that hews as close to the book as the filmed material allows... this is it.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Freakzilla » 14 Nov 2014 09:27

    I know I bad mouth Lynch's Dune a lot but it's still my favorite feature length, big budget version of Dune. :wink:
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Omphalos » 14 Nov 2014 13:55

    It would have been a lot better if they had just gone with that aardvark.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Freakzilla » 14 Nov 2014 15:01

    Can someone photoshop an aardvark into this?

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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Robspierre » 14 Nov 2014 21:44

    Lynch did not have final cut on the film, that lay with....the producers. That explains why scenes that worked and added to the story were cut. They went with material trying to play up the sci if blockbuster, ignoring story.

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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Jodorowsky's Acolyte » 15 Nov 2014 14:54

    I'm confused by the armadillo comment. Was that in an early part of the script? Were the armadillos really big or average sized? It would be a weird coincidence if the armadillos were the size of the worms, since I've worked on a Herbertarian-veined satire with such critters.

    I'd have to agree with Freak on the fighting. I understand the reasons of the filmmakers for not pulling it off, but having them at least try to pull off the Weirding Way as a fighting style instead of a sonic sound projectile would have been cheaper than the Weirding Modules. Their fighting choreography isn't perfect, but judging from the few fighting scenes the film had, it probably would have been a better alternative.

    Still, from devil's advocate view, if you hadn't had the Weirding Modules, or Dune being pulled off in this weird way, then we wouldn't have the Sonic Tanks for Dune II, or any of the Dune games, or a good bulk of sci-fi culture. And I admit in my helplessly dorkish way that I am fond of the Modules and how they were implemented. Even though those weapons are impractical for Arrakian use (all those Weirding blasts would summon more worms than a body shield), the Module itself is an interesting concept for a weapon.

    I personally have much affection for the original Dune film, including the Smithee cut. I watched my parents' recording of the extended version at a young age, and while I didn't understand it all, I perceived it as like watching a dream being put on film... Though I felt then that there were many ambiguities to the story which I didn't understand yet: I mistook Chani for Jessica, and didn't quite understand why the Baron was the villain, but that's another story.

    Seeing the theatrical version later on, I understood the plot better even without the extra scenes, but I still felt something was missing. I interpreted the montage where Irulan compresses time and describes Alia as a sign that there were more scenes intended for the spot in the film, but I was mistaken after seeing the extended cut. I watched the movie multiple times before I read Dune, but it didn't spoil the book for me. Getting a sense of the story beforehand made me appreciate the novel even more, because there were so many details and scenes missing from the film. Particularly the characterization, since the film limited much of the complexity implied about the characters in the film.

    Here is a list of things I did like in the film version:
    -The art design
    -The presentation Navigators
    -The Guildsman, with his body bag costume, and translator microphone
    -The additional subplot where the Navigators know what Paul is intending to do
    -Paul's dream sequences
    -The worms
    -Livia from I, Claudius as Mohiam, and her freaky performance
    -Francesca Annis as Jessica
    -The actor playing Thufir with the thick eyebrows (I used to think his name was Thufa, or Fufa, because of how his name was pronounced by the Baron)
    - Al from Quantum Leap as Yueh
    -Max Von Sydow as Liet
    -The special effects (excepting some scenes where the effects don't look pretty)
    -The Baron's make-up, and very particular performance
    -Alia: "My brother is coming with many Fremen wawriors!" "For he is the Kwithatz Hadewach!" "Wait for my brotha, Baron!"
    -The rolling waves of Caladan
    -The blue-within-blue eyes
    -Paul shouting at Mohiam, and breaking Feyd's body and the ground with his Weirding voice
    -"I am the Shadout Mapes, the House Keeper." Linda Hunt and her voice. I love imitating her.
    -"I have enlightened your nephews concerning my plan--" "MY PLAN!" "...THE Plan." How the Baron and Piter talk to each other.
    -Jean Luc Picard as Gurney, and how he performs across Kyle
    -The rain scene (yes, I know it doesn't work in the context of the original novel, but it still is a cool scene)
    -Paul and Feyd's fight: "I will kill you! I WILL KILL HIM!"
    --Duke Leto, and his very German English
    -Pretty much the rest of the cast
    -The Hunter Seeker scene
    -"You are so beautiful my Baron!" The Baron's doctor
    -Admittedly, the Weirding Module training scene
    -The Water of Life sequence, where the Worms worship Paul when he is in pain (kind of an homage to Children of Dune)
    -The ending credits, with the cast presentation, the ocean waves, and Toto's music

    What I didn't like:
    -Plot hole: if the Navigators could see that Paul was a threat to them, why couldn't they see that he would survive. And if they knew he was alive (as in the case when the Guildsman claimed "he won't drink the Water of Life"), why didn't they tell the Emperor? It's an added layer of complication which needed to be worked out better
    -The absence of much of Dune's original story, subplots, and characterization
    -Barely any sex scenes between Paul and Chani (the John Harrison miniseries remedied that very well)
    -A majority of night scenes being too dark to see in, with an overabundance of muddy colors
    -No indication that the Arakeen had any Fremen locales, other than servants
    --Stilgar's sietch seems to only wear their Stilsuits and not much else. We don't have much sense of the Fremen community and how they operate
    -Irulan narrates the story, but we don't understand why she would Paul's story reverently since he overthrew her father, or why she harbors no jealousy for Chani
    -The sense that there was much more to the story that they were intentionally leaving out.
    -Even with the extended cut, there were still many more scenes which the movie needed to make the story more complete

    In conclusion, I like it very much, but I'm still nagged by its shortcomings. I don't think it is a complete failure. As an ambiguous experimental sci-fi film, it has tons of aspects which I admire. It's main problem is incompleteness, which would've be rectified if the film were allowed to be longer. That, or cut down to the most important parts of the story.

    Instead of dwelling what they should have or did not do, I'd rather learn from the mistakes of Lynch's Dune (as well as those from Jodorowsky's Dune and Harrison's Dune) if another Dune film ever gets made... Or at least a fan made film, if that sort of thing ever gets allowed.
    '...all those who took part in the rise and fall of the Dune project learned how to fall one and one thousand times with savage obstinacy until learning how to stand. I remember my old father who, while dying happy, said to me: "My son, in my life, I triumphed because I learned how to fail."' -Alejandro Jodorowsky
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby georgiedenbro » 15 Nov 2014 21:05

    I have been pondering for a while trying to write a script for a theatrical version of Dune, or possibly even a musical. I might muster up the guts to try this eventually, but God help me if I ever have to go before the HLP to discuss the rights...
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Naïve mind » 16 Nov 2014 06:34

    georgiedenbro wrote:I have been pondering for a while trying to write a script for a theatrical version of Dune,


    So have I, thinking about ways it could be turned into an accessible, brainless Hollywood blockbuster. What I have in mind is an abomination, but it might be fun to flesh it out.

    georgiedenbro wrote:or possibly even a musical.


    I'm looking forward to Alia's song, and the choir of the Fremen.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby georgiedenbro » 16 Nov 2014 14:00

    Naïve mind wrote:
    georgiedenbro wrote:or possibly even a musical.


    I'm looking forward to Alia's song, and the choir of the Fremen.


    I hadn't given thought to specifics like this, but it could be effective to have a little girl sing a very eerie and non-cheery song. I definitely would take heed of Jodorovsky's idea to have completely different musical styling for the different peoples in the story. The sad thing is that I like the Toto soundtrack so much that I'd never be satisfied until I wrote a better theme than them. Sigh.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Jodorowsky's Acolyte » 16 Nov 2014 19:34

    I for one would want the musical to be a rock opera composed by Pink Floyd, if only Rick Wright hadn't died. It would be a bit much to have Roger Waters be Paul Atreides. He's very good at the songs about losing one's Daddy.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l9b9UhFe6Eg

    If you want to approach other musical styles, please, by God, don't opt for the Rogers and Hammerstein approach.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pG_5kVaV2fg
    '...all those who took part in the rise and fall of the Dune project learned how to fall one and one thousand times with savage obstinacy until learning how to stand. I remember my old father who, while dying happy, said to me: "My son, in my life, I triumphed because I learned how to fail."' -Alejandro Jodorowsky
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Ampoliros » 16 Nov 2014 21:18

    I've thought about it, and you can't do it as a movie. I think the best solution would be to do a weekly hourly show in the vein of BSG or Game of Thrones.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Naïve mind » 17 Nov 2014 02:52

    Jodorowsky's Acolyte wrote:If you want to approach other musical styles, please, by God, don't opt for the Rogers and Hammerstein approach.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pG_5kVaV2fg


    Exactly, Dune is better suited to a heavier, operatic style, like that of Gilbert and Sullivan:

    I am the very model of a modern Atreides scion
    My skills in prana-bindu are worth far more than a litrejon
    And though I am ignored by Ecumenical Commission
    I am the true messiah of the Arrakis religion

    My table manners are the envy of the Arrakeen elite
    Although I won't lightly excuse the Harkonnen's foul misdeed
    It did plant in this barren soil for greatness an important seed
    I can already see my love life is going to be mostly sweet

    (apologies to everyone :violin: )
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Jodorowsky's Acolyte » 17 Nov 2014 05:10

    Naïve mind wrote:
    Jodorowsky's Acolyte wrote:If you want to approach other musical styles, please, by God, don't opt for the Rogers and Hammerstein approach.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pG_5kVaV2fg


    Exactly, Dune is better suited to a heavier, operatic style, like that of Gilbert and Sullivan:

    I am the very model of a modern Atreides scion
    My skills in prana-bindu are worth far more than a litrejon
    And though I am ignored by Ecumenical Commission
    I am the true messiah of the Arrakis religion

    My table manners are the envy of the Arrakeen elite
    Although I won't lightly excuse the Harkonnen's foul misdeed
    It did plant in this barren soil for greatness an important seed
    I can already see my love life is going to be mostly sweet

    (apologies to everyone :violin: )


    :lol: Naive Mind, my comrade, you are a clever rogue after me own heart. Shall we then commence with the songs "Three Little Fremen Maids" or "We Are Gentlemen From Kaitain"?
    '...all those who took part in the rise and fall of the Dune project learned how to fall one and one thousand times with savage obstinacy until learning how to stand. I remember my old father who, while dying happy, said to me: "My son, in my life, I triumphed because I learned how to fail."' -Alejandro Jodorowsky
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Nov 2014 07:50

    Jodorowsky's Acolyte wrote:I'm confused by the armadillo comment. Was that in an early part of the script? Were the armadillos really big or average sized? It would be a weird coincidence if the armadillos were the size of the worms, since I've worked on a Herbertarian-veined satire with such critters.


    Rumor has it that Lynch originally intended the Atreides pets to be aardvarks but he switched it to pug dogs because Patrick Stewart refused to be filmed carying an aardvark into battle.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Nov 2014 07:57

    Jodorowsky's Acolyte wrote:... Or at least a fan made film, if that sort of thing ever gets allowed.


    Don't hold your breath. There was a Spanish film school that started an attempt that looked very promising but the HLP stomped on it.

    I think there's some still images around here somewhere... I hope someone saved those pictures.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Jodorowsky's Acolyte » 17 Nov 2014 10:20

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Jodorowsky's Acolyte wrote:... Or at least a fan made film, if that sort of thing ever gets allowed.


    Don't hold your breath. There was a Spanish film school that started an attempt that looked very promising but the HLP stomped on it.

    I think there's some still images around here somewhere... I hope someone saved those pictures.


    I know. I remember the story well from the thread my Jacurutu colleagues started some years ago. At least the HLP didn't go after Jodorowsky's Dune documentary, though that doesn't count as a film version. The HLP needs new people who won't ravenously cull out anything they deem to be detrimental to Herbert's copyright. Perhaps our brightest moderators of Jacurutu may better fit those positions?

    I aspire to do my own puppet show adaptation of Dune, though if that would count as a copyright violation.
    '...all those who took part in the rise and fall of the Dune project learned how to fall one and one thousand times with savage obstinacy until learning how to stand. I remember my old father who, while dying happy, said to me: "My son, in my life, I triumphed because I learned how to fail."' -Alejandro Jodorowsky
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Omphalos » 17 Nov 2014 15:26

    Ampoliros wrote:I've thought about it, and you can't do it as a movie. I think the best solution would be to do a weekly hourly show in the vein of BSG or Game of Thrones.


    I agree.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Omphalos » 17 Nov 2014 15:28

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Jodorowsky's Acolyte wrote:... Or at least a fan made film, if that sort of thing ever gets allowed.


    Don't hold your breath. There was a Spanish film school that started an attempt that looked very promising but the HLP stomped on it.

    I think there's some still images around here somewhere... I hope someone saved those pictures.


    Dune fan film: http://tau.solahpmo.com/viewtopic.php?f ... anish+film

    The trailer is there too, somewhere.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Smiley » 19 Nov 2014 19:44

    I saw the movie at my parent's friend's house when I was kid. I did not understand much of it, but I remembered that my mom told me that the navigator was once a human being. Later on, after seeing the movie once or twice more, I read the book. I was at first a bit disappointed in the book due to a difference in tone and there not being the mentant mantra. I started reading the sequels and got more and more invested in the universe and loved it. When I look back on the movie, I can see now that the ending misses the point of the book, and though I see the book as superior, part of me still likes the movie a bit more. Call it a guilty pleasure, but how can one resist Patrick Stewart charging into battle with a pug, or Brad Dourif as Piter?
    Seriously, I believed that Gurney was fighting for the honor of his Duke and protecting his cherished pug. I believed..

    So for me it was a good gateway into the Dune Universe, but is also the reason I don't enjoy the first book as much as I might have without seeing this movie first. The acting, for the most part was spot on, and I used to think that it suffered from too much executive meddling, but now that I have seen some other things by Lynch I am not sure the executive meddling was a bad thing.

    (Don't hate me...)
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby lotek » 20 Nov 2014 07:51

    Smiley wrote:(Don't hate me...)



    Impossible!

    Smiley wrote:Seriously, I believed that Gurney was fighting for the honor of his Duke and protecting his cherished pug. I believed.. )
    Spice is the worm's gonads.
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    Re: I watched 1984's DUNE last night. It's still terrible.

    Postby Freakzilla » 20 Nov 2014 08:31

    To put things in context, the only movies full length movies David Lynch directed before Dune were Eraserhead, a cult "midnight movie", and The Elephant Man, a commercial and critical success. The extent of his weirdness was yet to be fully revealed.
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