Dune film hits theaters and HBO Max at present: All of the terminology it’s essential to know

Dune movie: A guide to all the terminology you need to know

The brand new Dune trailer opens with some exposition from Zendaya’s Chani.

Warner Bros.

The Dune universe is huge. You would write 10 books on the planets, intergalactic politics and individuals who reside amongst so many stars. And a few folks have! Frank Herbert’s six-novel epic is surrounded by different tales written by his son Brian Herbert with the assistance of the inimitable Kevin J. Anderson. We all know the film headed to theaters and HBO Max on Oct. 21 solely covers a part of the unique e-book, however that does not make the quantity of knowledge wanted to get essentially the most out of what we’re about to expertise any much less intense.

Happily, you all have me. I have been studying the Dune books my complete life, and all of that info lastly has a use. This is a fast terminology information with fundamental explainers to assist make the film that rather more satisfying. 

Onerous-core Dune followers might shout, “Simply learn the e-book!” however — enjoyable truth — the primary Dune film launched in 1984 additionally had a paper handout explaining all the unusual language used within the movie. It appears a little bit foolish at hand out a chunk of paper for folks to check with in a darkish theater if you need them to observe the display in entrance of them, so I will do it a little bit otherwise. Please do not use your telephone when the film begins, however if you wish to look at this earlier than it begins and after it is over, you might have it right here to take pleasure in.

The Emperor

After a number of galactic wars, considered one of them in opposition to robots, the Nice Homes of the Universe determined there wanted to be a ruling physique of kinds to dictate how issues can be. The Dune universe is now managed by a single ruling household, Home Corrino. The top of this home, Emperor Shaddam IV, is the 81st Emperor of the Identified Universe. Because the film begins, the 68-year outdated Emperor worries about his place as emperor, due to a rumor he’d poisoned his 138-year outdated father. 

To keep up energy, Shaddam must preserve everybody within the universe glad and underneath management. 


Every thing within the universe requires this mind-altering drug to proceed at its present tempo. It makes you smarter and reside longer. Beneath excessive circumstances it even makes your eyes flip blue, however extra on that later. Everybody makes use of spice, aka melange, although how a lot you utilize impacts its impact. House pilots take it to allow them to navigate this universe’s type of hyperspace, and tacticians take big portions to allow them to course of large quantities of knowledge in a brief time frame. 

Everybody wants spice, and with out it the universe would grind to a halt and numerous rich folks would die, as a result of these things is artificially extending their lives. 


Spice can solely be discovered on one planet, and that is Arrakis. This planet is sort of completely desert, with little or no naturally occurring water discovered on the floor. The spice is the byproduct of large sandworms that roam your complete floor of the planet. Makes an attempt to maneuver sandworms to different planets to create a number of locations with spice manufacturing have failed. It solely occurs on Arrakis. 

That is crucial planet within the universe, and whichever household the emperor places in command of mining spice is thereby one of the crucial essential.


Dave Bautista as Glossu Rabban Harkonnen. 

Warner Bros.

Home Harkonnen

At first of Dune, the household answerable for mining spice on Arrakis is the Harkonnen household. The homeworld for this household is massively industrial and polluted, which means that they had accomplished such job stripping their very own planet of its pure assets the emperor thought they might be good for mining Arrakis. 

Home Harkonnen is requested to depart Arrakis in the beginning of the Dune story as a result of they have been stealing spice to promote on the facet as a substitute of giving all of it to the emperor. These usually are not good folks, and they’re going to do something to regain management of Arrakis. 

Home Atreides

As one of the crucial in style of the Nice Homes within the universe, Duke Leto Atreides and the remainder of his household have constructed a fame for doing the appropriate factor and serving to these in want. They’re extremely in style, and it’s believed that in the event that they run the mining operations on Arrakis it might preserve everybody in spice for a really very long time. 

However being that in style normally means your enemies are keen to do fairly a bit to take you down. 

Dune Eyes

The deep blue-within-blue Eyes of Ibad. 

Warner Bros.


The native folks of Arrakis are a tribal folks devoted to dwelling in concord with the planet, which incessantly makes outsiders see them as supernatural and even magical for having the ability to survive within the desert and coexist with the large sandworms. Fremen are normally straightforward to identify, as all of them have spent a lot time with spice within the air, water and meals they’ve developed deep blue eyes. The entire eye is blue, not simply the retina, they usually name this the Eyes of Ibad. You will additionally see Fremen wielding a crysknife, a sacred weapon cast from the tooth of an enormous sandworm.

When the Harkonnen occupied Arrakis, the abuse of the planet was so excessive some Fremen felt it essential to take motion. This precipitated a substantial amount of bloodshed and in some instances enslavement of the Fremen, all of which ended when Home Atreides took management. However that does not imply all and even most Fremen belief the brand new occupants of their planet. 


Arrakis is a particularly scorching desert with nearly no moisture within the air, and being exterior in regular garments for prolonged durations of time is sort of at all times catastrophic. Everybody who lives on Arrakis, together with the Fremen, put on stillsuits to outlive within the harsh atmosphere. This go well with not solely retains your entire physique protected from sandstorms and excessive warmth, but it surely additionally collects all the liquid your physique produces and filters it to the purpose of being drinkable once more. 

Sure, all the liquid your physique produces. All of it. 


Timothée Chalamet and Rebecca Ferguson as Paul Atreides and the Bene Gesserit Woman Jessica, sporting stillsuits.

Warner Bros.

Bene Gesserit

There’s an intergalactic guild of supernaturally enhanced ladies on this universe, referred to as the Bene Gesserit. Amongst many different issues, these ladies can alter the chemical composition of their very own our bodies to create poisons and manipulate others by an influence of suggestion referred to as The Voice. This assortment of talents is incessantly known as The Weirding Approach, and even features a notably deadly type of fight. The Bene Gesserit are incessantly revered as holy ladies, cursed as spies or witches, and usually feared and revered all over the place. 

It is extraordinarily uncommon for a person to be taught the methods of the Bene Gesserit, a lot much less be notably good at utilizing their talents, as a result of they’re extraordinarily cautious with their breeding and selecting who will get educated. 


After an important battle with pondering machines, the Nice Homes determined to completely ban the usage of advanced computer systems. As a substitute, nice human computer systems referred to as Mentats have been created by the good homes. These people are able to immense calculations in milliseconds, in addition to navy technique, although not all Mentats are created equal. The coaching normally begins at beginning, and these human computer systems are uncovered to one thing referred to as the Juice of Sapho as soon as they’ve proven superior cognitive talents, to additional broaden their thoughts.

One of many biggest dwelling Mentats is Thufir Hawat, who serves Home Atreides.

Private shields

As safety from assassins, many rich members of the Galactic Courtroom use a private protect to maintain themselves protected. This power barrier is customized calibrated to the wants of the wearer, which means it may be free sufficient to permit somebody to succeed in a hand by it or dense sufficient to limit air molecules from passing by. These shields are shut sufficient to the pores and skin to guard the wearer from absolutely anything at vary, although a slowly transferring blade can penetrate a protect if wielded appropriately. It is usually recognized all through the worlds that if a private protect have been ever hit by a lasgun the ensuing explosion can be atomic in scale.

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