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I'm new to the Duniverse and I have a few questions about the film.

1) Are the navigators human?

2) Why do the Benne Gessirit not warn Jessica about the attack if she is a member?

3) Why does Yue help the Harkonnans if he believed his wife was dead?

4) How do the Baron and that assasin guy get into the fortress while the attack is still going on outside?

5) Why does Yue leave the ring in the shuttle and why is Jessica so offended by this?

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Well not to spoil anything, I would highly recommend reading the first book. It would answer most of your questions. The movie is very different than the book (similar plot though).

Or you could watch the miniseries to get a better feel for the Dune universe (nothing better than watching a 5 hour miniseries if you watch directors cut which I highly recommend).

To quickly answer some of the questions that come to mind

Spoilers below:

1. Yes. The melange (spice) transforms them.

2. Dunno, really depends on whether you go by book or movie. Movie is most likely because it was an adaptation of the book, and adaptations leave out lots of stuff. I don't think it mentioned in the book that the bene gesserit were aware that Atreides were going to be overthrown

3. I guess he was hoping there was a small chance that his wife wasn't dead? Also, he had the plan to kill the baron using Leto anyway (a failsafe in case his wife was indeed dead).

4. Probably because the movie is only 2 hours 17 minutes to fit a 500 page book.

5. Not sure, I think because this confirms her husband Leto is dead.

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*Cough* Spoilers below: [hide]

1: They were once, but massive quantities of spice alter their morphology.

2: She isn't a member. She left the Bene Gessert when she bore a son instead of a daughter. Furthermore, in the book a Bene Gesserit did warn Jessica through a hidden message.

3: Because he wanted to be absolutely certain, and couldn't bear not knowing.

4: They got in before the attack.

5: He left the ring as a sign of Leto's death and in order to pass it on to the next in line, Paul. Jessica is probably upset due to the former. [/hide]

There is a thread for questions, of course...

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I at first thought that it was hard to understand because Lynch had wanted to include so much material and made it not very "plot based" (by being less literal to be more on the content). I didn't know at that point that he had gotten trouble with the cuts and everything.

Those who do get interested in what his behind his movie though often actually got interested exactly in that part of Herbert which was found in the movie. Seems he got the "Frank Herbert's" style, and quite different than mini-series which are more litteral in comparison.

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2) Why do the Benne Gessirit not warn Jessica about the attack if she is a member?

I disagree with Dante. She is still a member, just not in good/great favor. She is warned "For the father, nothing." But as any Bene Gesserit knows, non-involvement in politics is best. They have higher priorities, that of their breeding program. Politics are fleeting and irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. I'm sure Jessica also lives under the false assumption that her Duke is more cunning than to be snared in a trap. She is blinded by love, and that is one of the rules of the Bene Gesserit, not to be blinded by love. This is what happens.

The error is to assume that another culture (i.e. The Bene Gesserit) would have morals that we value today, in our culture or cultures. In fact, they have an entirely different world view with different foci of priorities. They would sacrifice one of their own in order to make their long-term presence stable. Plus, if they were to help Paul and Jessica too directly, then the two of them would not be able to resolve the conflict with their own abilities, which is something the Bene Gesserit feel is much more valuable and honorable. Let them find their way out. If they are "saved" they will be weakened. They cannot have a weak Kwizatz Haderach. That would be unacceptable. Better to lose it altogether than to have a weakened one.

And yes, as Dante says, there is a hidden message by Fenring's wife in the room with all the plants. Did this scene end up in the Smithee version? Or was it in the Mini-series? The message says explicitly that there is a traitor but does not name him. Jessica's flaw is that she would never suspect Yueh because he is conditioned to be loyal.

4) How do the Baron and that assasin guy get into the fortress while the attack is still going on outside?

That's the purpose of having an insider. Yueh made certain they would be in where they needed to be.

5) Why does Yue leave the ring in the shuttle and why is Jessica so offended by this?

As Dante says, and also it shows Yueh is not entirely lost. He knows that there is a small chance that Paul and Jessica will escape their death sentence (in fact Yueh is the one who arranges to have them taken to the desert, it's his idea.) He needed to hand Leto to the Baron in order to a) get his Wanna back and b) ensure that he could attack the Baron when he discovered the truth, which he surely suspected all along. This is a prime example of Herbert's "Plans within plans" that the prequels never come close to achieving. (Sorry for the blatant dig on them here.) Yueh is working along 3 or 4 fronts simultaneously. He is the traitor, he is trying to get his wife back, he his plotting to kill the Baron, he is saving the boy. Brilliant and wonderfully complex, just the way humans are.

I suspect Jessica is more upset that she didn't figure it out sooner, as she noticed that Yueh was hiding something. She's kicking herself as much as anything. She believed that Yueh's Suk contitioning was infallible, and she should have known better. Her mistake. Again, it's that wonderfully complex layering of emotions that Herbert does so well: She is angry at herself, angry at Yueh for being a traitor, feeling the loss of her husband and the reality of it, and somewhere grateful that Yueh has given them this opportunity. People never experience emotions singly, but in odd combinations like this. But how does it surface? Maybe the "upset" aspect dominates. But all those other factors are there too.

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Jessica's flaw is that she would never suspect Yueh because he is conditioned to be loyal.

It is rather she knew his wife was killed by the Harkonnens, and thought that Yueh would never help Harkonnens because of this (this is what she actually says when discussing the possible traitor with Hawat).

BTW, I think it's stated in the book that Yueh didn't imagine his wife was still alive, or, even more, hope that he'd get her back. He just wanted to be certain she didn't suffer anymore because she was already dead. His only goal was to kill the Baron, as to avenge the suffering the Harkonnens have inflicted upon him and his wife.

Dean Stockwell's Yueh character is brilliant and tragic (especially in the cut-out scene with Yueh and Feyd-Rautha), but, to my mind, in the book Yueh is more suffering from loss of his wife than from his betrayal.

And also, the BGs didn't warn Jessica about the attack because, in the book at least, everyone involved actually realised that the Baron had set a trap for Duke Leto on Arrakis. However, no one outside the conspiracy knew that Yueh was a traitor, and thus, nothing could prevent the outcome.

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