By Alex DeBlaey
“Dune” is the newest adaptation of the Frank Herbert epic by the same name. “Dune” follows Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet), the heir to House Atreides. Paul has been having dreams, potentially visions, of events happening on Arrakis, terrible events. Paul seeks to be on Arrakis as soon as possible as he believes that he may stop the impending cataclysm.
Arrakis holds a valuable chemical known only as melange or “spice” that allows for interstellar travel and is only found on there. Spice is not only valuable to local powers, Houses Atreides and Harkonnen, but also the native Fremen who consume the spice ritualistically.
During the time that House Harkonnen were stewards of Arrakis the Fremen were brutalized in order to ensure that spice harvesting was able to continue as desired. As stewardship of Arrakis transfers from House Harkonnen to House Atreides, political turmoil begins and Arrakis sees the start of open warfare as the story of “Dune” begins.
It is quite hard to talk about “Dune” without getting too far into spoilers that ruin the film’s core as it is a worldbuilding story. The film is one that is best experienced with a friend who knows the “Dune” books well, as some things will go unexplained. “Dune” is otherwise a near return to the classic epic film, a dramatic retelling of a heroic character as they rise to accomplish great feats.
Here the story is not that of a historic event or person, but the history of the universe in what is often considered one of the genre-defining works of science-fiction. The film features well written drama that holds up for most of the film and wonderful world building.
The only downsides are that the film does not feel like a complete story, it does identify as part one, and some of the CGI fails to convince. The film’s pacing is a treat in its own right. “Dune” despite being 156 minutes does not feel nearly as long despite fleshing out a world taking the time to instill the wonder of the alien planet and society that is introduced to the viewer.
The film is a must see for any sci-fi fan out there, especially to any fans of the “Dune” novels, as well as anyone looking to spend an evening at the theater. For the best experience avoid spoilers as they will ruin the film massively.