Misadventures in Dune

Provided by Steve Weintraub (Collider)

Andru Martinez and Havon Ha

Earning over $330 million at the box office worldwide, the reboot of the science fiction adventure, Dune, has distinguished itself as one of the most popular movies of 2021. The film is loaded with star power: Timothee Chalamet, Josh Brolin (Thanos in Avengers), Dave Bautista (Drax in Guardians), Jason Momoa (Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones), Zendaya (Spiderman), and Oscar Isaac (Star Wars) among other notable actors.

Dune is based on Frank Herbert’s 1965 sci-fi novel, which won the Hugo and Nebula Awards for science fiction and fantasy writing. Dune is the first of six novels in the Dune saga.

Unlike the original release of Dune in 1984, which was a financial disaster, the 2021 reboot has earned accolades with an 82% critics score and a 90% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Intrigued by the buzz around the PG-13 rated Dune, we decided to watch the two and a half hour feature and give you our views on the movie.

The year is 10191 and the Atreides family, the rulers of the ocean planet Caladan, are told by the Emperor to move to the desert planet, Arrakis. On the desert planet, Duke Leto Atreides (Isaac) and his family mines an essential edible substance, a “spice,” that makes humans more intelligent and live longer.

Leto’s son, Paul (Chalamet), is mentored by two warriors – Duncan Idaho (Momoa) and Gurney Hallack (Brolin). Soon after their arrival to the desert planet, the Atreides family is sabotaged by a rival family, the Harkonnens, led by a monstrous Baron Vladimir Harkonnen (Stellan Skarsgard).

Paul and his mother, Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson) are separated from their family and they must fight for survival. On the run from their assailants, Paul and Jessica are embraced by the Fremen, a native Arrakis people. Paul begins to develop romantic feelings for a Fremen woman, Chani (Zendaya). Once Paul reunites with the surviving members of the Atreides family, he joins forces with the Fremen to plot his attack against the hated Harkonnens.

Andru’s rating: I found the characters, special effects, and storylines in Dune fascinating, but at times the plot would meander. Fans of Zendaya were outraged that she was only given 7 minutes of screen time. Director Villeneuve wanted to “save” her for the sequel. 3/5 stars

Havon’s rating: Timothy Chalamet is a star and all eyes will follow him when he is on screen. The actors were genuine, but viewers should be familiar with the story before watching the film or they will be lost and confused. 2/5 stars

The 25-year-old French-American lead actor Timothee Chalamet starred in the critically acclaimed Call Me By Your Name (2017). Director Denis Villeneuve has produced many memorable films including Blade Runner 2049 (2017), Sicario (2015), and Enemy (2014).