Monday, March 31, 2014

The Greatest Movie Never Made

Jodorowsky's Dune (2013) - Pavich
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Riding the tide of success he had with El Topo and Holy Mountain, Alejandro Jodorowsky and his French producer Michel Seydoux set out to make mind altering Sci-fi, the-humanity-will-thank-me-later masterpiece, Dune. Director Frank Pavich chronicles the failed process with great details with many main players involved and it's a fascinating one. Jodorowsky managed to amass these 'spiritual warriors' with his manic enthusiasm - the cast includes Dali, Orson Welles, David Caradine and his then 12 year old son as the film's titular character, Paul, and for special effects, Dan O'Bannon (who later did Alien), for storyboarding and concept design, Moebius (comic book artist who Jodo collaborated later), HR Giger to name a few. What Jodo and Seydoux did was making a huge, thick story book with all the concept drawings, character designs and storyboards with full color illustrations and circulated around the major studios for 5 million finishing fund. It was 1975, two years before Star Wars but no one was interested in it. With his heavily accented English, excited Jodorowsky dominates the show, reminding us, trying to help us imagine how great it would've been. With the help of animation sequences all based on Moebius drawings, Pavich makes the case also, how amazing, and to some extent, how impossible, the movie would have been. Nicolas Winding Refn claims he is the only one of the few who actually 'saw' the film with the help of the story book and Jodo's vivid description one night, when he was dining with the crazy Mexican. And he says, "it's awesome!" I believe him.