Dune sells out worldwide with mesmerising visuals


Anesa Nevzadi, Staff Writer

Fans of the classic desert tale, Dune, have sold out theaters worldwide to revel in the release of Denis Villeneuve’s cinematic depiction of the novel. The book, written by Frank Herbert in 1965, has been given two adaptations preceding the Villeneuve version, but they did not satisfy readers completely. It wasn’t until the seasoned science fiction director, Villeneuve, was hired onto the project that the novel’s admirers really began to have hope for an accurate portrayal of the beloved story.
Dune follows the film’s noble protagonists, the House Atreides led by Duke Leto Atreides (Oscar Isaac), Lady Jessica Atreides (Rebecca Ferguson), and their strong-willed son Paul Atreides (Timothee Chalamet). After being given control of spice production on the sandy and scalding planet of Arrakis, the Atreides must navigate brutal confrontations with the villainous House Harkonnen and discover means of building trust with desert natives otherwise known as the Fremen. The young Paul Atreides faces an internal battle between maintaining allegiance to the family throne while facing an immeasurable magnetism to the Fremen.
Taking place in the year 10191, Dune delivers a drastically different environment than what viewers are familiar with. Between creating the extremely diverse Dune planet landscapes and constructing the futuristic machinery of the film such as the ornithopter, Villeneuve provides a creation beyond that which any reader could have imagined, and no area felt over-done or gimmicky.
The director went the extra mile in balancing the computer-generated animation with believable hand-to-hand combat that grounded the movie overall. The special effects were not distracting as can often be the case in science fiction films but rather felt organic. The costume design, done by the talented Jaqueline West and Bob Morgan, followed Villeneuve’s minimalistic vision; clothing in the film highlights the advancement and emphasis on practicality that the time period would require. Considering the attention to detail and aesthetic consciousness, viewers should not be surprised if Dune walks away with next year’s academy award for costume design.
Aside from mesmerizing scenery and clever design, the most captivating part of the film is none other than its star-studded cast. Exquisite performances from actors such as Timothee Chalamet, Jason Momoa, and Rebecca Ferguson added the depth that connects the audiences to the film. The emotional variety in the scenes not only demonstrates the actors’ talent but provides the audience with the individuality of each character. Laughing, crying, hands held to hearts, and inquisitive raised brows could be universally seen throughout the theater, which is a testament to the talent of the film.
Dune, grossing over 40.1 million dollars in its North American premiere weekend, has changed the future of science fiction cinema forever. In conjunction with the mastermind behind Dune’s soundtrack, Hans Zimmer, Dune’s stunning visuals immerse audiences in a complete sensory experience. The film is available to be streamed from home on HBO Max, but if given the option, see the film in theaters. IMAX and Dolby Atmos add a third tangible element that is truly the cherry on top of a nearly perfect film.
I give Dune 4.5 stars out of 5 only because it is a bit hard to follow for those who haven’t read the book. It may need to be watched twice for full understanding, but it’s worth it.