1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
completely successful adaptation,
This review is from: Dune - Miniseries (Region 2) (Import) (DVD)
I have read the entire Dune series. The characters and stories permanently entered my imagination. While I was disappointed with the Lynch version, I thought this one really and truly hit the bullseye, perhaps in large part because most of the actors are highly talented unknowns. Unable to rely on star power - with the exception of WIlliam Hurt, whose Duke Leto is subtle and cunning - the director in my viewing was freed to construct his own vision of the great novel.
The casting, I found, is exceptional and nearly perfect - a must with a story that, unusual for scifi, develops such interesting characters. Newman is a really great Paul, a brooding prophet who feels trapped by his destiny as a liberator and destroyer. His mother and Chani are also superb, played by beautiful and talented actresses who are not Paltrow-wannabee stick figures. Then there is Stilgar, who is portrayed by a German actor with incredible, though muted power, a true leader who can adapt to revolutionary change; the same can be said of Gurney Halleck. Finally, you could completely believe Giancarlo's emperor, whose arrogance is matched only by the decay of his empire. It was so refreshing to see this talent come to full flower. The only one I didn't think that good was the Baron Harkonnen, who came off as something of a caricature to me, laughing studiply at his deviousness in every scene.
Then there is the wonder of the setting, which the computer-generated scenary succeeds in evoking. At least for me, I could believe in what I was seeing and revel in the grand themes - so unique in scifi - of a messiah and revolutionary, of bursting the bounds of human possibility as defined by genetics and politics, of the unpredictable X factor in the spice and the worms as they influence humanity decisively.
I do not know, however, if this miniseries would succeed with those who did not read the book first. The ideas are so complex and recondite that I would recommend at least keeping the first novel handy, with the explanations in the appendix.
Warmly recommended for all serious fans of scifi. This is a superior product.