NZ release: 22 October 2022

Violence Rated on: 22 October 2022

Part one

Dune part 1 poster

What’s it about?

A mythic hero’s journey, following the story of Paul Atreides, a gifted young man born into a great dynasty. He must travel to Arrakis, the most dangerous planet in the universe, to ensure the future of his family and his people. Conflict over the planet’s most precious resource will determine his destiny.

The facts

  • Director Denis Villeneuve (Blade Runner 2049, Arrival)
  • Starring Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Oscar Isaac
  • English language
  • Runtime 155 minutes
  • An adaptation of the 1965 epic science fiction novel by Frank Herbert, which is being told across two films.

Why did it get this rating?

This film was cross-rated by the Film and Video Labelling Body. You can find out more about cross-rating here.


There are several fight sequences through the story that show hand to hand combat with sharp weapons. A lot of the fighting happens with fast cuts and rapid movement, with sound effects used for great effect. Characters do die but we don’t see close up injuries or blood. The camera focuses more on the character’s reactions rather than showing the wounds.

In an obscured scene it’s clear a character is beheading unnamed prisoners of war but the camera cuts away before we see any detail or victims. In another scene a character is killed by having their throat is cut. While it’s a shocking moment, we don’t see any of the detail as the camera only shows the murderer’s point of view.

We see two characters restrained and kidnapped, and a woman is smacked across the face while unable to defend herself.

Content that may disturb

A character is put through an endurance torture test that involves placing his hand in a box. He is made to imagine severe pain and he must overcome these sensations in order to survive the test.

Characters are poisoned or drugged using deadly darts or sleeping pills. This has the effect of making the characters unconscious and unable to protect themselves.

A number of characters appear good but may be evil or have bad intentions. These political dynamics may not be understood by younger viewers.

The film features fantasy characters that are striking, and at times scary in appearance. A large, bald, evil character floats in the air rather than walks. Gigantic worms with razor sharp teeth roam the desert and can swallow whole vehicles as well as people. These images are alarming and memorable and may disturb younger viewers who aren’t old enough to understand these are not real.

Further information

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