Taken spans five decades and four generations, centering on three families: the Keys, Crawfords, and Clarkes. World War II veteran Russell Keys is plagued by nightmares of his abduction by ... See full summary »
In the 11th millennium, Shaddam IV, ruler of the Galactic Empire, rids himself of his competitor Duke Leto Atreides by giving him control of the desert planet Dune also called Arrakis; fully aware that its present owner, Baron Vladimir Harkonnen, will not give it up without a fight. The reason is that Arrakis is the source of the valuable spice, a substance produced by enormous and dangerous sandworms, which bestows special mental qualities on anyone who consumes it. A short while later Harkonnen does indeed succeed in ambushing and massacring Leto and his men. Leto's mistress Lady Jessica, who is a member of the clairvoyant order of Bene Gesserit, manages to escape into the desert with her son Paul, and after a long and dangerous march they finally encounter the Fremen, the long suppressed desert tribe of Arrakis. Impressed by Paul's clairvoyant abilities, tribal prince Stilgar takes in the fugitives. Very soon the Fremen are convinced that Paul is their long-prophesied redeemer, and... Written by
The Mahdi statue at Sietch Tabr was inspired by the Buddha statues in Bamian, Afghanistan, which were later destroyed by the Taliban. See more »
In the very beginning, when Paul dips his fingers in the bowl of water and flower petals, the water can be seen clearly moving in the bowl, even though it has not yet been touched. See more »
Mah'Di! You are the voice from the outer world! You are the prophet sent to us by Shai Hulud! You must take your place, Muad Dib. You must do it now! We've waited long enough.
Do you live for the good of the tribe, Stilgar?
There is no other way.
And for the good of the tribe would you let me stab this knife into your heart?
It is the way! Call him out!
It is the way, Muad Dib!
[Paul throws the knife to the ground at Otheym's feet]
[looking up angrily]
Hard tasks need hard rules. You...
[...] See more »
The Dune miniseries opens with a "flashforward" montage of action sequences. The realisation quickly dawns that these are the *best* scenes out of the 265 minute running time, and they're not good. Not good at all. Oh dear.
But let us not judge a book by its cover (even though that's exactly what we're being invited to do). Let's give Dune a chance to redeem itself.
Well, here's the expected watery opening on Caladan. But who's this petulant, strangely ugly man? Paul Atreides? *This* is Paul Atreides? This generic plastic puppet? And why does he look so old? What's that? The actor's only 25? Well, he doesn't *look* it, and that's way too old anyway.
But at least he has charisma, right? Wrong. Alec Newman is a stumbling, mumbling buffoon. I'm picturing him being discovered sitting in the dark in a remedial acting class because nobody liked him enough to tell him the class was over, and he's just too dumb to realise it. When your Paul Atreides has all the screen prescence of soggy toast, and an acting range from "petulant" to "blank" your production of Dune is doomed from the start.
The other actors take pity on poor Alec though, and give uniformly insipid and incomprehensible performances so that he doesn't look too bad by comparison. At least, I *assume* that is what they are doing. Because I'm charitable, you see.
To be fair, they are clearly being given no direction at all. Random gestures, blank or inconsistent deliveries, missing their marks, it's all here. This is like a master class in how not to do it.
And sure, there are more elements of the book in this miniseries than there are in the 1984 movie, but there aren't twice as many, because of all the. Pauses. To fill. Time.
But we can forgive all this because of the small budget of $20 million, or only $5 million per hour. Nobody could be expected make quality science fiction on that sort of budget.
Except perhaps "Stargate SG-1" which makes do with $1.4 million per 50 minute episode, or "Farscape" at $2 million. And frankly I'd rather watch four episodes of either of those while being punched in the kidneys, than have to sit though the travesty that is Dune the miniseries again.
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