Dark Horizons reports that a new film adaptation of Frank Herbert's Dune novels is in the works. I've never read these books, but I gather that they are regarded as classic works of science fiction. Dune was last adapted for the big screen in 1984. Directed by David Lynch. with a cast including Kyle McLachlan, Gordon Sumner (Sting), and Patrick Stewart, it was a massive flop, and having seen it, it's easy to see why. A couple of years ago I had the misfortune of watching an extended director's cut of this film on DVD, which a friend loaned to me. Lynch disowned this extended cut, so it was released under the pseudonym of Alan Smithee.
It was three hours long, but my brother Scott and I chose to watch it for half an hour at a time over a few days, because that was all we could stand. The film opens with a narration that is meant to introduce all the protagonists, but it is too confusing and wordy to follow. We were able to establish that the basic plot revolves around various ruling families from different planets in a distant galaxy who are vying for control of a precious spice. Things go downhill from there, so that anyone who watches the film without knowing anything about its source material will find it nearly impossible to follow. Scott and I watched in bewilderment as for no apparent reason, a giant space worm appeared on screen and excreted balls of molten rock from itself that randomly formed into stars and planets.
I forget the rest of the storyline, if I remember rightly, some sort of messianic figure eventually arises who helps his people to overcome tyranny. By the end Scott and I honestly didn't care. We normally don't watch bad movies, with the possible exception of Battlefield Earth, but it was one of the most excruciating film watching experiences we've ever had. It stands for all time as a textbook example of how not to do a film adaptation of a book.