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56 of 61 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars MUST-SEE documentary for any movie enthusiast: "could be fanastic, no?"
"Jodorowsky's Dune" (2013 release from France; 90 min.) brings the background story on what is referred to as possibly the greatest movie never made, the adaptation of the science fiction book "Dune" by "high art" director Alejandro Jodorowsky. As the documentary opens, we get a quick crash course of Jodorowsky's earlier work, including experimental theater in Mexico in...
Published 3 months ago by Paul Allaer

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I wanted to like this more
I wanted to like this more. It's really an exceptional tale about collaboration and finding the right artists for a project, but I love the original Dune story and could not get over how much he changed it. I'm glad the movie was never made.
Published 1 month ago by e.grace


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56 of 61 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars MUST-SEE documentary for any movie enthusiast: "could be fanastic, no?", May 28, 2014
"Jodorowsky's Dune" (2013 release from France; 90 min.) brings the background story on what is referred to as possibly the greatest movie never made, the adaptation of the science fiction book "Dune" by "high art" director Alejandro Jodorowsky. As the documentary opens, we get a quick crash course of Jodorowsky's earlier work, including experimental theater in Mexico in the early 60s and a couple of cult movies ("El Topo", "The Holy Mountain") in the early 70s that did surprisingly well in Europe. So Jodorowsky gets the opportunity from a French producer to assemble a team of "warriors", as he calls them, to make his vision of Dune into a visual reality. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: first and foremost, if you are a movie enthusiast, you are in for a finger-lickin' good time, honestly! Credit for that goes of course to director Frank Pavich, but let's be honest: he couldn't have had a more enjoyable subject than Alejandro Jodorowsky, who turns out to be a master story teller. The way he convinces people, one after another, to give their cooperation to the movie, is just priceless (one of the best stories involves the movie makers making a trip to London to ask Pink Floyd to provide the soundtrack--just watch!). Jodorowsky is now in his mid-80s but he looks about 20 or 30 years younger, and most importantly, he remains as feisty and as ambitious as ever. There is a nice soundtrack to the movie, by Kurt Stenzel (of the band SpacEKraft).

I had seen the trailer for this movie a number of times in recent weeks, and this was for me once of the most anticipated releases so far in 2014. The movie opened last month at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati, and I went to see it right away. The early evening screening I saw this at was very well attended, I'm happy to say. If you are in the mood for a top notch documentary that gives the spotlight to a creative genius who could've/should've brought Dune to the big screen the right way, by all means see this. "Jodorowsky's Dune" is HIGHLY, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of Bluray- A "must see for George Lucas and Ridley Scott fans - but fascinating to watch for others., July 7, 2014
All the advertising - as well as most reviews - of the 2013 documentary Jodorowsky's Dune use the phrase "The Greatest Film Never Made" (and I guess I am too, right?). That pretty much sums it up in five words. But the story goes deeper. As I post this review there are already 10 reviews here but most of them are based on either the theatrical release or the Amazon Instant one. The Bluray has 46 minutes of "Deleted Scenes" which add to the 90 minute film as released. (One has to wonder what the subject of this fascinating documentary - Chilean Director Alejandro Jodorowsky - would think of paring down 136 minutes to just 90. The 84 year old director (best known for his first film "El Topo" ) is engaging in the lenthy interviews that form the central thread of director Frank Povich's project. (He certainly doesn't look 84!

I won't repeat what has been said in the other reviews - about the plot and the amazing "creative team" that Jodorowsky assembled to make his 1975 film (years before Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark and Alien). Orson Welles and Salvador Dali (as actors), Pink Floyd for the score. I'll, try to add some additional info to guide you in knowing more about the BD release. (A review copy was provided by the studio in advance of release date).

As I said there is 46 minutes of "deleted scenes" - there are nine of these scenes. They include a section on the costumes, Frank Herbet's original science fiction novel "Dune", Jodorowsky on Hollywood, Jodorowsky's film philosophy and more. And then there is the theatrical trailer.

The film takes an unusual approach to "subtitles" . Because some of the interviewees speak French in the film, English subtitles are necessary. But director Povich has chosen to provide English subtitles even when Jodorowsky is speaking in English, which he does MOST of the time. The comments made by other English-speaking interviewees are not subtitled. The subtitles are in white print and are usually - but not always - easy to read (when there is a white background).

Another thing I wanted to mention is that - even though the film (Dune) was never made, Jodorowsky had produced thick (and I mean 12 inches thick - or more!) volumes of the story boards of the script. Using the images from these books and computer technology (not available in 1975) Povich has "animated" sections to give the viewer a sense of "what might have been". And a section near the end shows how Jodorowsky's work influenced later films by Lucas, Scott and others of modern day fantasy films.

I'm not a big Sci-fi fan but I certainly enjoyed this BD and I know that any sci-fi film lover will relish every moment of it.

I hope you found this review both informative and helpful.

Steve Ramm
"Anything Phonographic"
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It would have been wonderful!, April 29, 2014
Maybe it wouldn't have been Dune, but it would have been incredible. The stable of talent Jodorowsky had lined up is beyond belief: H.R. Giger (from before he did Alien), Salvador Dali, Moebius (the comic artist), Orson Welles, and so many more I can't keep track of them all. It was a grand if quixotic adventure to attempt anything like that ...

... and it ultimately failed. Perhaps the would-be backers shied at the erratic reputations of some of the participants, perhaps Jodo's vision was too far ahead of its time (or theirs), perhaps, well a lot of things. Many of those who would have been involved have passed away, and the others apparently weren't consulted for this movie, so we might never know. (C'mon, it's about how great Dune would have been, not why it wasn't.)

Even today, decades later, Jodorowsky's enthusiasm for this would-have-been incredible pageant remains undimmed. And, even if the movie he envisioned never came to pass, lots of movies did. The team he assembled went their ways, but many of them went on to other great things, often with each other. Perhaps Jodo's contribution was to connect these other great talents, rather than use them himself. One can only wonder.

-- wiredweird, reviewing the release to theaters
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic documentary...and the Blu-ray isn't bad, either, June 26, 2014
This well-received 2013 documentary by Frank Pavich explores the ups and downs of director Alejando Jodorowsky's failed adaptation of Dune in 1975. It's a fascinating "What If?" story that doubles as a look behind-the-scenes and a brief glimpse at what might have been. Featured participants include Jodorowsky (84 at the time of filming, and as charismatic as ever), artist Chris Foss, artist H.R. Giger and FX supervisor Dan O'Bannon (both later famous for "Alien"), producers Michel Seydoux and Jean-Paul Gibon, Jodorowsky's son Brontis (who also acted in "El Topo") and more. Fascinating stories are told, great art is shared and we see exactly where everything went off the rails. You'll hear about the involvement of Mick Jagger, Orson Welles and Salvador Dali, as well as failed studio pitches and, of course, the influence on modern sci-fi. It's a really well-done documentary from start to finish, no matter if you're familiar with "Dune" and Jodorowsky or not.

I received an advance screener from Sony for a review published separately at DVD Talk, which you can look up if you're so inclined. Sony's done a good job on this disc: the A/V presentation is terrific and the bonus features, though limited, are interesting. They include over 45 minutes' worth of deleted scenes from the film and the original trailer, which brings the total amount of content to just under 2.5 hours. Sure, it's more than a little expensive, but this is a fine disc and one well worth looking out for.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST MOVIE NEVER MADE, June 30, 2014
By 
Robin Simmons (Palm Springs area, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Alejandro Jodorowsky is a charismatic 85-year-old Chilean-French idiosyncratic filmmaker. He's also a writer, graphic novelist, actor, playwright, musician, all around madman and part time guru. Jodo, as he is known by his many friends and fans, is first and foremost a passionate artist. He has the soul of a creator who operates with a ferocious vision that remains singular, searing and enigmatic.

He's best-known for writing and directing the underground cult hits EL TOPO and THE HOLY MOUNTAIN that are still popular at special midnight showings.

In 1975, Jodo began working on his most ambitious project yet: an adaptation of Frank Herbert's futuristic Messianic space opera best-seller "Dune" starring his own 12-year-old son Brontis alongside Orson Welles, Mick Jagger, David Carradine and Salvador Dali featuring music by Pink Floyd. The production art was by some of the best, most provocative talents of the time, including Chris Foss, Dan O'Bannon H.R. Giger and Jean "Moebius" Giraud. With key above and below the line talent in place, Jodo was poised to change cinema forever. In fact, even though the film was never realized as envisioned by Jodo, it did impact numerous films, including STAR WARS, RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, ALIEN and even the more recent PROMETHEUS. (Unfortunately, David Lynch's DUNE, a big incoherent flop widely derided was not a result of Jodo's lavish and passionate dedication and design.)

Filmed over three years, director Frank Pavich's fabulous documentary on Jodo's ill-fated project is the result of unique and unprecedented access to production material including an extraordinary hard-bound book -- as thick as two big city phone books -- that contained the screenplay, art and meticulous story boards that was used as a "calling card" to pitch the movie to main stream studios. Fascinating interviews including H.R. Giger (artist, ALIEN), Gary Kurtz (producer, STAR WARS) and Nicolas Winding Refn (director, DRIVE) give an unexpected heft and credibility to the material.

JODOROWSKY'S DUNE was an official selection at the 2013 Cannes, Telluride, Toronto and AFI film festivals.

I was blown away by this incredible documentary that is as wonderfully entertaining as it is inspiring. It is not only about a failed movie project; it is about what it means to be an unfiltered, fully committed artist. It is about a single-minded, full-blown passion so intense that it consumes fellow artists, musicians and performers. It is also about how so-called failure has amazing rewards.

Jodorowsky is mesmerizing as he recalls his ambitious venture that does not exist except in the minds of those who created it. It is not Herbert's "Dune," but a morphed vision that was merely triggered by Herbert and then given a new incarnation by the obsessive, Chilean surrealist. It's a "What if" story written without restraint. Jodo's stated goal was "to mutate young minds " and change the world. His movie was about the redemption of a planet. It's not clear why the studios did not want to work with Jodo; the impression I got is that they were afraid of him and his disregard of the film's cost and length. Jodo has disdain for money to be factor in the creation of true art.

I can't recommend the movie highly enough. Sony Classics. Blu-ray.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Jodorowsky - Genius or Madman?, July 18, 2014
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I enjoyed every minute of it. As far as Jodorowsky himself, whether crazy or genius - I love the guy's passion. The man is clearly an artist and he does what he does for art's sake - I loved it when he pulled his bankroll out of his pocket - basically mocking it - and filmmakers who are only in the business to turn a profit for this handful of.... well I can't use the language he used to describe it but it was a great moment. I would love to have seen what Dune would have turned out to be if his vision would have made it to the screen. Sadly - a lot of what he envisioned - seems to me anyway - may have been totally unfilmable at the time. Only two complaints with the presentation, there are LOTS of subtitles - white subtitles which were regularly placed against white or light-colored backgrounds making them difficult to read. Also they should have edited in the deleted scenes as an extended cut instead of including them as extras.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Film That Would be King., July 29, 2014
By 
Eric Sanberg (Berwyn, IL United States) - See all my reviews
Jodorowsky's "Dune" is one of a few would be masterpieces which has come to light as of recent. It showed up in a book I was reading so viewing the documentary only made sense. What an eye opener.

Here's the scoop. in 1975 director Jodorowky set out to assemble a team to help him turn Frank Herbert's book "Dune" into a motion picture.This documentary interviews him as he recounts his efforts to assemble the army of "warriors" necessary to do the job.

Wow. What an odyssey. He pretty much takes the viewer step by step in gathering the artists, musicians (Pink Floyd and Magma) the special effects people, actors and the like. He recounts his vision and how he approached these individuals in order to recruit them. I loved listening to this man speak. He's no hack director. He's an artist using film as his canvas. One only need to view his films such as "El Topo," "Holy Mountain" and "Sante Sangre" to realize he's a man of vision. As he himself says: Dune wasn't to be a movie, it was to be an experience to last through the ages. And as you view the art of Moebius, H.R. Giger and Chris Foss you realize what an impactful visual element the movie would have contained. The sets, spaceships, costumes all were simply incredible. One of the travesties of this is that Jodorowsky had everything wrapped up in a tight package. All a studio needed to do was hit the green light and write a check. They didn't. He lost.

There are Film historians, other directors and such to add flavor to what was happening with the project and how they feel the world was denied one of the great film experiences. I won't spoil but the last 15 or so minutes really underlines what a travesty it truly was. I viewed this documentary right before I hit the sack and I had the weirdest dreams ever that night. This really hit me where I live. This is a must see for any fan of Science fiction film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Jodorowsky's too damn weird to direct this movie. Go get David Lynch...', July 5, 2014
By 
Corey Lidster (Belleville, Ontario) - See all my reviews
As a long-time fan of Alejandro Jodorowsky's insane and convoluted Bande Dessinee, his conceptual lunacy brought to life by the most impressive array of artists in the history of the medium, this film tells the story behind the stories.

His classic film 'El Topo', like a collaboration between Sergio Leone, Sam Peckinpah,and David Lynch (ironically...), was something completely new, a beautiful, horrific anomaly that is widely credited with starting the 'Midnight Movie' phenomenon of the 70's. Never lacking ambition, Jodo set his sights on adapting Frank Herbert's novel 'Dune', a sprawling science fiction epic that would require a massive budget to bring to the screen.

This fascinating film recounts Jodorowsky's mission to make 'Dune', using his persuasive personality, unshakable self-confidence, and obsessive drive to enlist talents like Orson Welles, Pink Floyd, Salvador Dali, Moebius and H.R. Giger. His script presents a fusion of the original novel with his own distinct narrative elements, and the pre-production stage yields thousands of pages of unorthodox ideas and conceptual art, much of it by Jean 'Moebius' Giraud. When the funding breaks down and Jodorowsky is forced to abandon his dream, much of the work find it's way into his comics debut with Moebius, 'The Incal', a work of imaginative power and artistic brilliance that stands as a modern classic. It also launched Jodorowsky's long and prolific career as BD's pre-eminent writer.

In a strange and somewhat tragic twist, after Jodorowsky is 'fired' as director of the Dune adaptation, the stated reason being that his work was 'too weird', the producers then hired famously weird auteur David Lynch to take over. In a just whim of fate, 'Dune' will prove to be Lynch's one and only failure, both financially and critically. 'Jodorowsky's Dune', on the other hand, is a fascinating look at one of the world's most interesting creative personalities, and how exciting, satisfying, difficult and painful the process of making a movie can be. Unfortunately, we can only speculate on how amazing his version of 'Dune' might have been, but the work done would influence every other science fiction film of the late 70's and 80's, from 'Star Wars' to 'Alien' (H.R.Giger would go from Dune to his famous conceptual designs for Alien, leasing his dark, other-worldly artistry; Dan O'Bannon would go on to write the film) and 'Blade Runner' (Moebius would take much of his experience on Dune into Blade Runner, providing the visionary art behind the stunning architecture and vehicles). By involving so many talented people, many of whom were new to film, and creating these connections that otherwise would never have been made, Jodorowsky's unrealized vision of Dune changed the course of film and comics. The best documentary of the last few years. {91/100}
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic Documentary of An Artists Unmade Epic, August 1, 2014
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Jodorowsky is a genius. He attempts to unlock the hidden secrets in your brain with his movies. And lets face it, Alejandro is making art here in as much as Picasso created his own abstract art. With DUNE, he was stepping more into the 'normal' cinema with his ideas for the epic he was trying to make. The major studios wanted to make his movie, without him directing it. They were concerned that his ideas would drive the film over budget or even deviate from his script completely and go off into metaphysical space. So, a vastly terrible, version of DUNE, was made by David Lynch. Jodorowsky's version would have reshaped Lucas's films and Spielberg's films and so forth. In fact, the crew he had assembled was captured for other Hollywood movies and after watching this documentary, you'll realize what movies were made only because he had assembled a first time film crew with the visions to see beyond the story lines they were creating or working with. As Alejandro states, if DUNE had been made by him and his visionaries...."Would have been fantastic, no?" This is a great documentary. You need to see it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The coming of a god, July 25, 2014
Jodorowsky's Dune weaves the tale of the unseen, the untold. It was a film that was sadly never meant to be, too ambitious for the 1970's and possibly even too ambitious even today. Alejandro Jodorowsky, the darling of the late night indie movie seen, was given the opportunity to work his magic on the likes of Frank Herbert's Dune; turning it into a hallucinogenic coming of a god.

The film would star Dali, Mick Jagger, David Carradine, and Orson Welles. With the talents of numerous visionaries including a young H.R. Giger. They were all personally chosen by Alejandro for their spiritual aura.

To quote one review in the film's trailer, "I drank it up like man in the desert". The documentary is utterly breath taking simply by the ideas presented, though more attention should have been focused I feel on what transpired in regards to the plot.

Highly recommended to any science fiction fan or a Dune enthusiast
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Jodorowsky's Dune
Jodorowsky's Dune by Frank Pavich
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