The first audiences in the world have seen DuneThe long-awaited film, adapted from Frank Herbert’s classic sci-fi novel, just had its premiere at the Venice International Film Festival ahead of its debut in theaters and on streaming later this fall.

The latest version of Dune (David Lynch had an infamous flop with the same material in the 1980s) is directed by Denis Villeneuve, and stars an all-star cast including Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgard, Dave Bautista, Zendaya, and Jason Momoa. The film was originally slated for release in November of 2020, but has been delayed for almost a year because of the pandemic. And even with high expectations, the early reactions to the movie coming out of Venice thus far are extremely positive. At least one critic compared the movie favorably to the experience of seeing 2001: A Space Odyssey for the first time. For sci-fi films, it doesn’t get any better than that.

Here’s a selection of the early reviews of Denis Villeneuve’s Dune out of Venice:

To be fair, there were a few dissenting voices as well:

Here is the film’s official synopsis:

A mythic and emotionally charged hero’s journey, “Dune” tells the story of Paul Atreides, a brilliant and gifted young man born into a great destiny beyond his understanding, who must travel to the most dangerous planet in the universe to ensure the future of his family and his people. As malevolent forces explode into conflict over the planet’s exclusive supply of the most precious resource in existence—a commodity capable of unlocking humanity’s greatest potential—only those who can conquer their fear will survive.

Dune premieres in theaters and on HBO Max on October 22.

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