Dune Review: More Than an Epic


Image courtesy of IMDb.

Dune, at its essence, is a masterpiece. It is a slow-paced and visually stunning piece of science fiction that paints a specific world better than most films can. 

The film, released in late October, follows the Atreides family, a powerful family well known in the universe titled the Imperium. Duke Leto Atreides (Oscar Issac) is given control of Arrakis, a planet that contains an unimaginably valuable spice. Duke Leto and his people travel there to harvest the spice, which proves to be a difficult task. His son, Paul Atreides (Timothee Chalamet) is some sort of future hero, often referred to as “the one.” The story follows Paul through his journey to Arrakis and the challenges he and his family face. Although the movie is only half of the original book, it is more than one hundred percent worth the viewers’ time.

The acting performances in Dune, although modest, are all impressive. With a cast containing the likes of Timothee Chalamet, Zendaya Coleman, Josh Brolin, Oscar Issac, Rebecca Ferguson, Dave Bautista, Jason Momoa, and more, it seemed impossible for this group to disappoint. They certainly exceeded my expectations, as every character played their unique role perfectly. Timothee Chalamet, for me, was a subdued actor who I couldn’t see as a leading role in an epic science fiction movie like Dune. I was pleasantly surprised by his performance. His character was portrayed to perfection, and Chalamet proved me wrong in every regard. Chalamet showed that he could be in a top role and demonstrated a variety of powerful emotions throughout the film, ranging from quiet conversations to loud arguments with other characters.

Director Denis Villenueve has produced amazing films throughout his filmography career, including Sicario, Arrival, Enemy, Prisoners, and Blade Runner 2049, and a small collection of French films. All of these films are critically acclaimed and widely recognized as visually stunning and breathtaking, but none of them quite match the scale of Dune. Villenueve rarely uses a large budget to create his films, but Dune used a whopping total of 165 million dollars, his second-highest budget use throughout his nine films.

If I paused Dune at any second, I would see a stunning shot. Villenueve does an incredible job at keeping the viewers’ eyes glued onto the screen while the plot slowly but excitingly progresses. The amazing cinematography only adds to the vast world that is being created throughout the film. The film immerses you into its environment and has you stuck in your seat from start to finish. 

The world-building in Dune is a large part of what makes it so great. Villenueve creates structures, animals, vehicles, plants, and more incredibly unique details of his world to create a dramatic, realistic, immersive feel. The planets and landmarks created for the film are so futuristic and advanced, yet look so real at the same time. While watching Dune, you feel like you are a part of a different universe, similar to the likes of Star Wars or Lord of the Rings.

Overall, Dune is incredible due to its visually stunning cinematography and subtle but powerful acting performances. Villenueve and the entire cast came together to create a true masterpiece. The film is unique in its visuals, its story, and its acting. If you haven’t already, consider watching Dune and immersing yourself in its phenomenal universe. The film is screening in theaters and is available to buy on YouTube, Vudu, Apple TV, Google Play, and Amazon Prime Video.