Dune can seem a little overwhelming for those who haven’t read the 1965 Frank Herbert novel, so let’s break down the plot in the simplest way: Duke Leto Atreides (Oscar Isaac), his concubine Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson) and their son Paul (Timothee Chalamet) are ordered to move from ocean planet Caladan to the desert planet Arrakis, nicknamed ‘Dune’ for its swathes of sand and lack of water. It’s largely inhospitable, but is also the source of the ‘spice’, a rare substance that extends life and enhances one’s mystical capabilities. Leto is assigned stewardship of the spice, but is the offer too good to be true?
The trailer for the Denis Villeneuve adaptation dropped yesterday, full of oblique references and stunning imagery. Here are the 3 things we’re looking forward to seeing in the film:
The Paul-Chani relationship
Paul is the heir of house Atreides. Chani (Zendaya) is one of the Fremen, a tribe native to Arrakis. He dreams of her even before they’ve met, a sign of his burgeoning ability to see the future. When they do meet, they’ll alter the course of history.
The Gom Jabbar Test
Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam (Charlotte Rampling) holds a poisoned needle to Paul’s neck, and instructs him to place his hand inside a nerve-induction box that will cause him immense pain. The purpose of this test? To see how much he can endure and how strong his willpower is. Many years ago, his mother was subjected to it too.
Sandworms are massive, well, worms that live on Arrakis and grow up to 450 metres in length. Their larvae produces the spice, found in deposits across the planet’s sands, but they fiercely attack anyone who tries to harvest it, which makes the practice a life-and-death game. Also, they smell like cinnamon.