I love this movie so much. It’s a vastly underappreciated masterpiece. I think I’ve seen all the versions and I keep hoping for a single version that incorporates everything.
I first saw it on TV as a two-night two-parter. On a small black-and-white TV(!). It had this intro:
The graphics aren’t compelling. People say that’s author Frank Herbert himself doing the voiceover. It didn’t matter. It was supposed to provide an easy-to-understand introduction but I’m not sure many people thought that. I didn’t care. I found it somewhat helpful.
The movie made me go read the book. The book is a masterpiece of remixing Western history as if it was being told by someone under the influence of a psychedelic. You just have to remember the basics of the history you were taught in elementary school (OK, that I was taught; god knows WTF they “teach” today) to deeply appreciate it. Here’s a hint: It’s called Spice because spice trading was a huge thing in Western history. Using that slim lever, Herbert reimagined it all in a far future that fundamentally wasn’t really so different from recorded history.
And the movie itself has the most amazing art direction. One of the best soundtracks. And that cast!
Only David Lynch could have pulled it off like that. It’s his Eraserhead aesthetic applied to SF. And it’s nothing like anything else.
Read the book. See the movie(s).
The Spice must flow!