dune movie themes

There’s a lot going on in director Denis Villeneuve‘s Dune. Based on the epic sci-fi novel from Frank Herbert, the story is not exactly what you’d call “simple,” which is why it’s not been the easiest material to bring to the screen. But in case you think this is just going to be a piece of big mindless blockbuster spectacle, the folks involved with the film want you to know that Dune has a lot on its mind. In a new interview, both Villeneuve and star Oscar Isaac talk about the themes that audiences can expect to run rampant through the flick.

Empire‘s coverage of Dune continues with an interesting pair of quotes from star Oscar Isaac and director Denis Villeneuve. Isaac talks about how the film’s “anti-capitalist and environmental” themes make it doubly relevant to our current times, adding: “It’s about the destiny of a people, and the different way that cultures have dominated other ones. How do a people respond when it’s at the tipping point, when enough is enough, when they’re exploited? All those things are things we’re seeing around the world right now.”

I was already interested in seeing Dune, but having Isaac spell things out like that has me all the more intrigued. It’s clear that everyone involved with this movie want to sell it as something more than big, loud blockbuster. It’s a movie with important stuff on its mind – or so we’re lead to believe. Keeping that theme going, Villeneuve added: “Something I deeply love in the book is that there was a strong balance between the masculine power and feminine power,” and he made sure to keep that present in the film.

The star-studded adaptation features Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgård, Dave Bautista, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Zendaya, David Dastmalchian, Chang Chen, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Charlotte Rampling, Jason Momoa, and Javier Bardem, and is currently scheduled to hit theaters December 18, 2020 – although that could always change. In the meantime, the first trailer is due to arrive online on September 9.

In the movie, “In the far future of humanity, Duke Leto Atreides accepts stewardship of the dangerous desert planet Arrakis, also known as Dune, the only source of the most valuable substance in the universe, ‘the spice,’ a drug which extends human life, provides superhuman levels of thought, and makes foldspace travel possible.”

I’ve never read Dune, and I’ve only seen bits and pieces of the doomed David Lynch adaptation, so all of this feels fresh to me. Fingers crossed that Villeneuve’s movie lives up to the hype.

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