? Test Dept: Total State Machine | Main | In the Big Stupid there is always a certain force of credibility ?

May 17, 2007

The Alchemist

Harkonnen Chair.jpg

This month's Ion Magazine (pdf file) features an interview with early '70s director-prophet Alejandro Jodorowsky; an important inspiration to John Lennon's art-film audience and Marilyn Manson's wedding ceremony (you are looking for page 29). The whole piece is worth a look but I expect Flea-readers will share my dismay to learn of a particular factoid of which I at least had been blissfully unaware.

I had seen H.R. Giger's concept sketches for a film adaptation of Dune.* But I had no idea of the true scope and majesty of this the greatest movie never made. Time to adapt a continuum transfunctioner to my Odic battle zeppelin's improbability drive, load up on gold bullion and do some time-traveling creative production.

Jodorowsky's nex project is an adaptation of Frank Herbert's Dune. Jodorowsky brings in H.R. Giger and Moebius to collaborate on the project, casts Salvador Dali to play the emperor and gets Pink Floyd to provide the score. But this is before Star Wars and no one wanted to bank an expensive French sci-fi movie so the funding dries up. Moebius and Jodorowsky take some of their ideas from the Dune collaboration and end up making a series of French comics called The Incal which look suspiciously like Luc Besson's The Fifth Element. This starts Jodorowksy on a long and successful career writing comic books. He only occasionally dabbles in film again.

* More Giger film design here. Also, Giger furniture including his Harkonnen Chair. Nice.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at May 17, 2007 07:44 AM


Most cool..

and for the record, my eldest is named Duncan after a certain Mister Idaho...

Posted by: Gorthos [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 09:23 AM

Duncan... that is both extremely cool and a little scary at the same time. I now think my first born should be named Leto or Alia depending on the specifics.

Posted by: Ghost of a flea [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 09:43 AM

And that's Leto pronounced "lay-toe" the cool way as in the SciFi Channel miniseries and not "lee-toe" which is how I had been pronouncing it non-cool style in my head all these years despite a very English upbringing.

Posted by: Ghost of a flea [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 09:44 AM

My wife and I have an email response from Majel Roddenberry where she gave her blessing to us using her name for our (at the time) unborn child however he and the next were boys so we were unable to honour her.. My wife would not allow me to name either of the two youngest Tiberius to my sadness..

Posted by: Gorthos [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 10:09 AM

My future cousin-in-law is, apparently, distantly related to Napoleon Bonaparte (the resemblance is actually startling) and every firstborn son from that family gets the middle name Napoleon.

I'm trying to sell Wanda on the idea that all Taylor offspring should have middle names derived from notable Canadian, British or Roman generals (and admirals).

Posted by: Chris Taylor [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 12:17 PM

The Father of the Flea was named after a battleship; this strikes me to be a sensible course.

Posted by: Ghost of a flea [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 01:16 PM

I was named after a scottish actor and activist, my middle boy after a character from James Herriott's books and my youngest after a great Irish football striker. Much better than kids named after a truck or a soap opera star..

Posted by: Gorthos [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 17, 2007 08:29 PM

I can't say I'm as fond of those character designs as I was by some of the character designs with the David Lynch version. I particularly liked the combination of Maclachlan, McGill, Prochnow, Jones, von Sydow and Stewart for the main male protagonists. The art/design styles for the House Atredies forces were exactly how I picture them in my minds eye and it works for their . Kind of a mix of German/English military house and traditions as well as attitudes. Of course the wierding modules and other oddities related to the move were less happy.

I cannot stand the decision for some of the actors in the Dune Miniseries, especially Alec Newman for Paul. William Hurt wasn't bad as Duke Leto, but he just doesn't hold a candle to Jurgen Prochnow. Children of Dune was actually very good in my opinion though. However, they did a VERY good job of making Children of Dune.

I did however like a lot more of the art and design for the later mini-series with regards to the Harkonens and Fremen, though I preferred the stylistic decisions of Lynch's film for the Imperial Regalia.

Posted by: Montieth [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 18, 2007 01:15 PM

I agree completely the latter-days of empire look for the Lynch film was extremely appealing. I think I was most impressed by the architecture along the same lines. What I like about the Moebius designs is not so much how they fit with the books in my head but the over-the-top French sf-ness of it all. I think the Sci Fi channel costumes share some of that self-consciously Logan's Run/Jetsons/etc. fun.

I should point out I think this un-made Jodorowsky Dune would have in all likelihood been an epic train wreck of a movie but with enormous emphasis on the word epic. It would have been worth it for the Zeppelin soundtrack alone though even there the shade of Hawkwind would be rattling its chains...

Posted by: Ghost of a flea [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 18, 2007 01:53 PM