Sage McHenry, Copy

Sand, blue skies, sun and gigantic sandworms. The desert planet Arrakis is the only known source of “spice,” a substance used for space travel as well as a psychedelic drug, in the universe. This is where “Dune: Part One” takes place. The science fiction film, released on September 3rd, 2021, is directed by Denis Villeneuve. The film is the first of a planned two-part adaptation of the 1965 novel “Dune” by Frank Herbert. 

The planet of Caladan is home to the House Atreides. Duke Leto (Oscar Isaac), ruler of House Atreides and all of Caladan, is assigned to replace House Harkonnen as the head of the spice harvest on Arrakis. Leto hopes to make an alliance with the Freeman People, skilled fighters native to Arrakis.

The movie follows Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet) as he navigates his new home of Arrakis and comes into his own powers passed on to him by his mother, Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson). These powers allow him to see the future in his dreams, creating interesting transitions between present and future that foreshadow, without spoiling, all that is to come. 

The move from Caladan to Arrakis comes with a great shift in scenery. While Caladan features cliff-lined coasts, alpine lakes and rolling green hills, Arrakis’s terrain is made of great sand dunes and dry rocky deserts. The landscapes of both planets lend themselves to beautiful shots of scenery while also creating conflict for Paul as he adjusts between the widely different climates.

Paul faces various challenges that the desert has to offer and gets to see some of his dreams play out in reality. The various sandworm attacks, betrayals and unanticipated alliances definitely keep viewers on their toes. “Dune: Part Two” is set to release on October 20, 2023, and I for one am excited to see what Villeneuve has in store.