Science Fiction

Re-watched Dune


First watched last fall.

I feel like I noticed a lot more of the visual details this time. This director is so good at the atmospheric shots, and the way spice is shown, floating and glittery, looks cool. The lighting is used to excellent effect — apparently they went and shot some desert footage in the Empty Quarter which probably shaped the look.

Lots of symbolism. The mouse was overplayed (and that CGI won’t stand the test of time). I don’t get what the bull was supposed to symbolize. Too many flash forwards IMO.

The Scottish heritage is weird because it’s underused — Duncan and Gurney could be Scottish names, and there’s the bagpipes 🙄 but Leto Atreides doesn’t sound very Scottish (sounds Greek to me)? Is this supposed to be a colonialism thing reminding us the Atreides ruled over their previous planet as well, or that they incorporated the rituals of that planet?

The Dr. Yueh timeline confuses me. Isn’t this something Leto Atreides would have noticed?

Some of the dialogue still bothered me – the actors are great but couldn’t quite make them work: Duncan Idaho’s “m’boy” and Josh Brolin’s “they’re not human, they’re brutal” especially — but also the awkward moment where the Duke and his right hand man joke about what a hellhole it is, which doesn’t match the Duke’s character.

Red herring: what happened to the crisknife gifted to Jessica?

Why didn’t Jessica have more kids? Do they not have artificial insemination? Is there some special witchy thing she can do to control the sex of her child?

I’m confused why the Emperor authorized the use of his Sardaukars if he’s trying to conceal from the other great houses what will happen if they get too much power. And what’s his plan to smash the Harkonnens next? Why were the Atreides a threat but the Harkonnens, with the vast wealth of Arrakis, are not?

By Tracy Durnell

Writer and designer in the Seattle area. Freelance sustainability consultant. Reach me at She/her.

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