37 years after David Lynch’s controversial adaptation, Franck Herbert’s oversized universe comes to life again through the mind of filmmaker Denis Villeneuve. Between the sandworms and those of Hans Zimmer’s soundtrack, DUNE is already registered as a successful franchise of the next decade.
Paul Atréides, future Duke of a Maison Majeure, is doomed to experience an extraordinary destiny that is totally beyond him. As he wants to preserve the future of his family and his people, he finds himself compelled to travel to one of the hostile planets in the universe – the only one capable of providing the world’s most precious resource – Arrakis. Only those who manage to overcome their fear will be able to survive in this arid and dreadful desert.
Let those who have not read the novel have no fear, this rereading of the book is suitable for everyone. The two screenwriters of the film that are Denis Villeneuve and Jon spaihts seized the universe like no one else. From the start of the film, the Empire in the year 10191 presents itself to the viewer through a voiceover. Once the foundations have been laid, we are propelled into the beginnings of civil war. The Spice, the most coveted and rarest substance, is at the heart of all attention and thus initiates the beginning of Paul Atréides’ quest. In the guise of the current icon that is Timothée Chalamet, a new Hollywood franchise is emerging. If Warner and Legendary say they are ready to produce the second part, the Canadian filmmaker is watching. No question of using your budget in an attractive way. The director wants to make his films as he sees fit, full of references as well as political, environmental and spiritual messages. After the masterpieces of SF that are First contact (2016) and Blade Runner 2049 (2017), moviegoers around the world are eagerly awaiting this spellbinding blockbuster (s).
Much like what drives Cobb in Inception (2010) from Nolan, the dream is at the center of DUNE. The film opens with a disturbing voiceover indicating that “dreams are messages from the depths ”, while Duncan Idaho (Jason momoa) instructed his faithful friend that “Dreams make great stories” but that “What matters is when we are awake ” Villeneuve in this way inscribes his work in a visionary and powerful parable. Strewn with mythological details through the bas reliefs, the galactic universe of DUNE is exhibited with grandeur, splendor. The real settings of Jordan and Norway, for their part, surpass the abundant green backgrounds of Disney studios in recent years. In this way, the director confirms his status as a master, preferring to shoot in nature and trust the talents of his decorating teams to set up mind-boggling sets. What made the mystical force of the second part of Blade runner thus reappears in this masterful science-fiction fresco.
This new adventure long dreamed of by the Quebecer, pierces us. The music of Hans zimmer, as usual, generates vibrations that do not leave us once the cinema is abandoned. Oriental influences elevate the entire feature film to an unforgettable anagogy. Imposed imperially by Greig Fraser to whom we owe Vice (2019), Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016) or the next one The batman (2022), DUNE provides more than 2h30 of visual spectacle which, despite a few lengths, succeeds in making a desert and sand dunes alive and exciting. Each material, liquid, sandy or vaporous becomes its own character who accompanies each hero or anti-hero during the quest for the Spice. The main actors – Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca ferguson, Oscar isaac and Josh brolin – are wonderfully transformed by the staging and photography revealed in the film. Which increases our eagerness to be able to appreciate more in the upcoming second film, the performances of Zendaya, Javier bardem and Stellan Skarsgård who embody a ruthless baron repulsive visually. A sort of echo to the breathtaking character of Niander Wallace in the filmmaker’s previous film from across the Atlantic.
More than just a movie to unleash crowds and festivals, DUNE is delivered as a major work of the coming years. Without claiming or wanting to overwrite the version of Lynch, Denis Villeneuve continues to dazzle us. Suites, remakes, adaptations. So many words that have described theatrical releases for ten years, but which once in the hands of the filmmaker, become jewels of cinephilia. See you in 2024 to discover the future of the Fremen.
• Original title : Dune
• Production : Denis Villeneuve
• Scenario: Jon Spaihts, Denis Villeneuve
• Casting: Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Zendaya
• Release date (France): September 15, 2021
• Duration : 2h36min
• Gender: Science fiction, Drama
• Nationality : American