April 1st, 2006

buzz

David Lynch's Dune

The in-laws got this for free from the Guardian or somehing, and brought it over. Gosh, it isn't anything like as bad as I had been told. Generally beautiful to look at, with occasional dodgy effects to remind you that in 1984 sf films looked like Doctor Who rather than vice versa. Sting's acting, which I had heard was atrocious, is certainly no worse than anyone else's, including Kyle MacLachlan. Lynch did manage the tricky feat of combining long periods when the pace seems very slow with cutting out large amounts of the plot, which leaves the end result a bit confusing (which of course he took to greater lengths in Twin Peaks), but all the basic elements are still there. Diehard Herbert fans (and they are among the most hardline groups I have encountered in fandom) were no doubt annoyed by the liberties taken with the ending, but since that was one of the aspects of the book that least overwhelmed me I can live with it.

I'm not saying that it is actually a good film, mind. Just that its virtues, few though they be, have not been sufficiently credited, at least not to me.