Review Detail

9.8 14 10
TV-to-Movie December 06, 2021 4822
Overall rating
Audio/Video Quality
Audio Editing
Visual Editing
Dune 2000 is one I've always found hard to enjoy. What is good about it is the strenght of the story as told in the book, but taken as cinema... it just lays there, in the best of cases. It lacks a grandiose directorial vision beyond going through the motions (say whatever you want about the Lynch version, but you can't deny that it looks and feels majestic), and that's without even taking into account the horrendous CGI, the "exteriors shot in a soundstage" factor, the supremely silly costumes, the uneven pacing, and the wrongness of quite a few of the performances (Paul being the worst offender - from the start I thought the actor would have made a better Feyd).

But along came Spence, and the clips he posted on the forum with his version of certain scenes were a real eye-opener. Somehow, it all now felt way more exciting than I ever expected it to feel. And after watching the full edit, my best hopes were confirmed. While nothing can really be done about the worst visual aspects listed above, the spice of this cut does flow much better than it used to, and even Paul finally feels pretty much like Paul. It's true, though, that as other reviewers have mentioned the edit really finds its legs from the second act on (more due to the source than to the editing), and it is also true that I didn't think all of the changes worked for the best (for example, I think opening on Paul's vision was a better start, cinematically speaking, than doing so on the Reverend Mother Mohiam arriving on Caladan, which is of course the start of the book but is filmed in such a flat way that it lacks the power to hook the viewer from the get-go), but this is now a whole lot closer to how I imagine Dune. And it even manages to feel a bit more grandiose due to the excellently executed reframing to a wider aspect ratio and the color correction. Less obviously TV-ish, fortunately.

Thanks to Spence this sleeper has awakened. This is a clear replacement of the original for me, and will stand proudly on my shelf next to Spicediver's cut of the Lynch film. Highly recommended.
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