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Dune [DVD]

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Product details

  • Actors: Kyle MacLachlan, Virginia Madsen, Francesca Annis, Leonardo Cimino, Brad Dourif
  • Directors: David Lynch
  • Writers: David Lynch, Frank Herbert
  • Producers: Dino De Laurentiis, José López Rodero, Raffaella De Laurentiis
  • Format: PAL, Widescreen, Dolby
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Prism
  • DVD Release Date: 4 Oct. 2004
  • Run Time: 135 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (208 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004D0BA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,364 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

'Blue Velvet' and 'Twin Peaks' director David Lynch made this sci-fi epic set on planet Dune, where a precious life-enhancing spice is guarded by monster worms. Paul Atreides (Kyle MacLachlan) is the Prince who leads his people against the territorial designs of the Harkonnens, and who, once on Dune, discovers he is earmarked for an even greater destiny.


David Lynch's Dune is the brilliant but fatally flawed would-be epic feature film version of Frank Herbert's novel of the same name, the bestselling science fiction novel ever written. It is a complex but too heavily simplified version of a far more elaborate book, a darkly Gothic far future space opera revolving around an imperial, dynastic power struggle on the desert planet of Arrakis. With what was in 1984 an enormous $40 million budget, Lynch retained a surprising amount of the industrial/Victorian feel of his previous features, Eraserhead (1976) and The Elephant Man (1980), and was able to bring to the screen some of the most imaginative and awe-inspiring production designs, costumes and action then seen. Indeed, as a spectacularly atmospheric vision of the future Dune has as much to recommend it as the far more celebrated Blade Runner (1982), with which it even shares the female romantic lead, Sean Young--here just one star in a superb cast. The problem, which an unauthorised extended TV version failed to fix, is that Lynch's original vision of Dune was massively cut for length, and as such the final third is so rapidly paced as to undermine the superb first two thirds. A director's cut is sorely needed, the cinema version playing like a butchered masterpiece. Also available is an entirely unconnected four-and-a-half-hour mini-series, Frank Herbert's Dune (2000), which is less visionary but more coherent.

On the DVD: The 2.35:1 image suffers from not being anamorphically enhanced. There are minor flecks of dirt and scratches, but generally the print used is in good condition although there is a considerable amount of grain in some scenes and the image could be more detailed. The packaging claims the sound is Dolby Digital 5.1, but it is actually three-channel sound (stereo plus centre speaker), with the main stereo feed being duplicated in the rear channels. A full 5.1 remastering would improve matters considerably. Special features consist of the original trailer and a pointless gallery of seven badly cropped stills. There is a very basic animated and scored menu using the portentous main theme music from the film. --Gary S Dalkin

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mike Watkinson TOP 500 REVIEWER on 28 Jan. 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
*** Please note: This is a review of the widescreen 2 DVD Special Edition ***

Inevitably, in cutting the SF epic that is Dune down to 131 minutes duration, much must be lost from the story. I went to see this on release at a big London cinema with two friends. One had not read the book & was left confused by the plot, the other was disappointed by omissions. Me? I loved it! There you have, probably, the three basic reactions to the film. In the early 80's, no-one was going to have the courage to demand to be allowed an extended running time for a theatrical cut, much less the chutzpah of a Peter Jackson to attempt filming it over several films (& commit the money in advance, thank you very much!). The latter is probably the only way you could fully do the novel justice. The former? Well, Lynch's intended cut was nearly three hours, and the original script from the first effort to film it in the early 70's would have resulted in a 14 hour film! It's only fair, I think, to judge it for what it was & is, and not for what it might have been.

I can't answer for my first friend's reaction; I haven't seen it without having read the book, so I really can't say whether prior knowledge is a necessity. I know only that I could easily, from prior knowledge, fill in any missing bits without any trouble. It's worth noting that Frank Herbert was not only heavily involved in the making of the film, but also very pleased with the result. You can make a good case that, as the original author, he ought to know best.

So what's wrong with the film? It's not long enough, obviously. As a consequence you may (or may not) find the story confusing or too hacked about.
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93 of 99 people found the following review helpful By Alex on 13 May 2009
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
This is the review I would have liked before buying this blu-ray title.

I don't understand why this title has only been published for the German market. Perhaps it has a stronger following over there. Anyway, although the packaging and disk art is in German, once the movie's playing, that's all irrelevant.

I took the risk in getting this German import because although the movie is deeply flawed it has qualities that I really appreciate. The soundtrack by Toto is stunning and Brian Eno's "Prophecy Theme" is haunting. The story is epic. As a kid I was a fan of the book series and was deeply disappointed when the movie came out and was universally slated by the critics.

However, it is also beautiful. The sets and costumes are sumptuous. It oozes atmosphere, like Brade Runner and Aliens. If you can filter out the flaws and focus on enjoying its qualities, it is moving and uplifting. I will add my plea to those of others: "David Lynch, please transcend the trauma of making this film and the confused reactions of the test screening audiences that caused the studio to force you to butcher the movie down to its theatrical release length, recognise that this is a cult film and delight your fans by publishing your original, full-length director's cut." Given that this isn't likely to happen, the next best thing is this German blu-ray package...

To my immense relief, the upgrade to blu-ray was worth it. High definition detail makes it a different experience, one that amplifies the DVD experience. The dire special effects and the grainy scenes are rendered even more painful by high definition. However, the richness of the sets, costumes and performances from the all-star cast are equally boasted to new heights.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Philip Solo on 4 Oct. 2007
Format: DVD
Dune is an enigmatic movie, drawing from a literally huge series of books by the late Frank Herbert portraying a vast human space faring universe, bristling with rivalries and brimful of intrigues, wars, conflicts and political machinations. The drama centres on 4 planets.. Caladon, home of House Atreides (the `good' guys), Geidi Prime, House Harkonnen (definitely the `bad guys') and Planet Kaitain, home of the modestly self-titled `Padisha Emperor of the Known Universe' rather unfortunately named `Shaddam IV' . The movie opens with a brief narrative summary by Princess Irulan the emperor's daughter `Know now that it is the year 10,194...' who thereafter plays no part in the movie.

The focus and title of the movie is the fourth planet, the desert world Arrakis or Dune, origin of the spice Melange and the only place in the `known universe' where the powerful compound exists. Rivalry for the spice-mining contract is intense and we join the movie at a conjunction; the reluctant hand over of the spice-mining contract from the Harkonnen's control to that of the Atreides dynasty.

Next to Blade Runner this is probably my favourite movie, although so much has been already said about how it does not do the world of Herbert's visions justice and what might have been etc.To me, like the Harry Potter movies this is the best we can get to realise a world dream painted in one's head. Dune arrived for me as a young boy reading the books, the movie transforms it into a visual reality of imagination and I therefore I value it immensely as my one chance to enter the Dune universe.
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