Dune (1984) The Alternative Edition Redux | Special 1080p Edition

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I’ve a more comprehensive review of Spicediver’s film for the SD version; for this revelation I’ll keep it to the point, with some notes:

*the HD upgrade is, needless to say, amazing, and even the SD upscaled extended footage feels less jarring.

*any new changes are fully integrated and seamless. I know this edit quite well, more than any other fanedit out there, and I was looking for the changes but couldn’t easily pick them out.

*Finally, a quick shout-out to Spicediver for his thoughtful and engaging messages, consideration, and willingness to pragmatically look at Lynch’s film as a project in perpetual need for retooling.

Having just recently read the book again, it’s amazing how well Lynch captured so many difficult aspects of the novel. People call Dune “unfilmable” due to this, but he did well.

In watching this edit, there is a “Magnificent Ambersons” effect at about the start of book 3, where the careful, steady, almost slow-burn Lynch/Spicediver use through the first 2 hours becomes a rapid-fire series of melting psychedelic dissolve shots, telling an epic story in its last hour in a series of impressionistic images more than narrative.

The characters are all too human in this story. That’s the subversive secret of Herbert’s novel: despite the evolution, these characters are completely and utterly bound by their ultimate humanity, and haven’t the perspective to see through it.

When Alia intones this film’s final line, Spicediver was right to eliminate the original ending of the movie. Paul can’t make it rain. He’s just the ultimate psychedelic dude, is all.

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Owner's reply August 20, 2022

Thanks for the review. :)

Just to clarify for viewers: the additional footage that I used from the 'Alan Smithee' Extended TV Edition is not upscaled; it is an actual 1080p source that was released for the first-time ever in 2022 on the German Ultimate Edition Blu-ray set. Only the rough deleted scenes in 360i resolution that first appeared in 2006 have been upscaled in Dune Redux.

If any of the Extended TV Edition footage used in my 1080p edition ever looks a tad lower resolution, it's because when it was cobbled together for American cable TV in the late 1980's all the newly re-inserted footage was inexplicably zoomed-in slightly. If you carefully watch the intercutting in some scenes, you can see the slightly different sizing of subjects within the frame. Alas, that's part of the legacy of the TV Edition's weird and shoddy production by Universal/MCA.

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Amazing!

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(Updated: July 17, 2022)
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9.2
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9.0
Spicediver's Alternative Edition of the 1984 David Lynch adaptation of Frank Herbert's Dune is without doubt the most definitive version of the film thus far envisaged. The Redux provides the same experience in glorious high definition (where available).

Say what you like about Lynch's Dune, but you can't knock it for its ambition. A cinematic interpretation of a novel so intricately crafted some said it was impossible to translate, and indeed Jacobs, Jodorowsky and Scott had already tried and failed. De Laurentiis turned to surrealist director David Lynch, who, despite having never read the books, almost immediately signed on. A three-hour epic featuring an all-star cast (including the film debut of Kyle McLachlan) with 80 sets built across 16 sound stages. Unfortunately, a combination of factors led to an underwhelming and undercooked theatrical release, and Lynch has thus far refused to participate in further cuts of the film.

Spicediver takes as much of the existing material that remains and compiled them into four distinct chapters. The audio editing is almost entirely seamless, as is the video editing (the only time you really notice is when it cuts to footage from the assembly cut footage). The structure is a vast improvement over any cut I've ever seen, with so much more detail and worldbuilding added back into the film. The extended runtime gives so much more room to appreciate the scope of the story Lynch was trying to tell, and undoubtedly would have told much better if he and Dino had gone with the two or three parter originally intended. Even with these changes it's never going to be the most faithful adaptation, but the additional context does wonders.

My only gripe with the edit is that the new ending is a bit underwhelming. I'd have thought there would at least be some way to foreshadow the coming holy war expanded upon in Herbert's sequels, but what happens instead feels something of a non sequitur.

TL;DR - the best edit of Lynch's Dune to date, now in 1080p. I think spicediver might be the Kwisatz Haderach.

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Owner's reply July 21, 2022

Thanks for the thoughtful review.

Lynch did indeed script and film that narrative thread concerning Paul's fears and ambivalence about the holy war that his victory over Shadam would unleash. It was all cut out, unfortunately. The only deleted scene that's been released is of Paul having a nightmare about it - nothing else. So inserting that scene in the film would make no narrative sense because all the context around it is still missing.

It's a real shame we don't have those scenes, because it would restore much needed depth to the film's second half. As it stands now, Paul's only fear in the Lynch film is whether he will survive the Water of Life.

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(Updated: July 17, 2022)
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David Lynch's Dune is still known as a cinematic flop that failed to tell an engaging version of the first book. But it did have a lot of ambition for a movie of it's kind.

But spicediver's Dune Alternative Edition Redux / 480p version revealed one of the biggest flaws that I saw with the theatrical cut: it was too short. Spicediver fixed the issue by adding many deleted scenes and created a new structure to the movie which I loved.

When I heard that a 1080p version was released, it gave me a chance to rewatch the movie. Basically this version is the same fantastic fan edit I saw some time ago, but just a little bit better thanks to minor changes and a better resolution.

Thank you for reminding the fan edit community, why your edit is still an important part of fan edits and should be for a long time. Thanks for making this edit, spicediver!

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It's the Alternative Edition Redux in HD. I don't really think this needs more explanation, or more reason to recommend it other than that. This is one of the first fanedits I ever saw, arguably the one that most endeared me to the creativity of this medium, and I know I'm not alone on that. In HD, it's even better.

What else do I have to say? This is the definitive way to experience David Lynch's bold, unique take on Dune. Arguably the best way to experience any cinematic take on it until the new one gets its second half released. I can't recommend this enough. To this day, the greatest fanedit I've ever seen. Just now in HD.

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