# Isn't Arrakis supposed to be hot?

In the movie Dune, there is a lot of emphasis on how dry and sandy Arrakis is. However, isn't Arrakis supposed to be very hot? I mean, this is the main reason the Freman supposedly prefer to move outside during the night instead of the day. While watching the movie, I noticed that in every scene outside you never got the feeling that Arrakis has this hellish hot planet. After the movie I asked my daughter who has never read the book or learn about the story before, if she thought Arrakis was hot or not and based on the movie, she didn't get the impression that it was a hot place.

Edit: Indeed, it seems that in the appendix I, the book says it was a very hot place. "Kynes and his people turned their attention from these great relationships and focused now on micro-ecology. First, the climate: the sand surface often reached temperatures of 344° to 350° (absolute). A foot below ground it might be 55° cooler; a foot above ground, 25° cooler. Leaves or black shade could provide another 18° of cooling."

• A desert is an area with a low rain-fall, not specifically an area that is just warm - you can have warm humid regions and cold arid regions. Deserts do not have to be warm. From the books, a lot of the action of Dune occurs in the polar region of Arrakis, which presumably is not as warm as the equatorial region. Sep 26, 2021 at 1:30
• You can answer (and accept) your own questions. With your current edit your question is no longer a question. Sep 26, 2021 at 8:18
• Even if it is typically hot during the day, it could be really cold at night. This is often true in deserts. And planets are not uniform in temperature anyway. Sep 26, 2021 at 14:44
• Assuming "absolute" means Kelvin, 344 - 350 degrees Kelvin is about 70 - 80 degrees Celcius. That's the ground itself; a foot above it's 25K cooler (~ 45 - 49C,) The hottest place on Earth (Death Valley according to Google) clocks in at 54C. So yeah, Arrakis is hotter than Earth, but substantially enough to require special effects that show it? I dunno. With leaves or black shade knock off another 18K (~27 - 30C.) My home's AC is currently set to 25C. You'd certainly want protection (stillsuit) going out in daylight, but moving in shadow or at night, it might almost be pleasant. Sep 27, 2021 at 8:02
• Nitpicking, but: are you talking about the new dune 2021 or the original? You tagged the question <dune-2021> but AFAIK the movie is not out yet... Sep 27, 2021 at 13:09

For the 2021 movie specifically, there are a handful of scenes which indicate the areas of the planet that the movie takes place in are scorching hot.

1. Shortly after they arrive on the planet when Leto and Gurney are out on the balcony overlooking the city early in the morning the guards comment that the sun is getting too high and it is time for them to seal the building for the day.
2. When Paul goes out to the courtyard with the palm trees the man watering them tells him to go inside as it is too hot at this time of day. He is also wearing a sun shade over his head and is visibly sweating. Additionally the air is visibly shimmering, an effect of the very high temperature of the ground.
3. Fremen are depicted as only traveling at night to avoid the heat of the day unless absolutely necessary. This is said overtly and also implied when at the end of the movie Stilgar tells Jamis that they need to get moving as the sun will be coming up soon.
4. In the vignette of Chani at the beginning, she describes the spice harvesters as only coming out in twilight hours to avoid the heat of the day. This does not appear to be adhered to with the trip to the spice harvester in the middle of the movie however this could be explained away in any number of ways.
• I also recall in the scenes when the crawlers are setting out for the day, there being a loudspeaker-type announcement in background audio that the temperature was forecasted to be 140° or something. Feb 28, 2023 at 18:01

Arrakis is an incredibly dry desert planet.

But deserts are not necessarily hellishly hot. The Gobi desert in China/Mongolia averages below freezing temperatures through the year. Antarctica is a desert, too.

Even the Sahara, which maxes out at about 47°C sees daily averages in some regions of 30°C or even lower in the winter - which might be uncomfortable in the UK where the humidity is higher, but is more tolerable in a hyper-arid environment.

Most of the action of the movie takes place at fairly high latitudes - about 60° latitude - where it will be cooler than at the equator, even in summer (assuming that Arrakis doesn't have an extreme axial tilt). From the books, we know that the planet even has (very small) polar ice caps.

So - in conclusion - Arrakis is dry and sandy, but not necessarily hot.

• It seems that the book says it was indeed a very hot planet: `Kynes and his people turned their attention from these great relationships and focused now on micro-ecology. First, the climate: the sand surface often reached temperatures of 344° to 350° (absolute). A foot below ground it might be 55° cooler; a foot above ground, 25° cooler. Leaves or black shade could provide another 18° of cooling.` Sep 26, 2021 at 8:05
• I still don't think it qualifies as hellish. 350° absolute is 80°C - but that's literally the surface. Sand gets hot in sunlight - ever run barefoot on a beach? The passage mentions the air one foot above the ground is 25° cooler - so 49-55°C, which is not far over the temperatures recorded what I've experienced here in South Australia (without a stillsuit!). Sep 26, 2021 at 10:31
• I don't know about you, but walking over sand at above 40 degrees surely will be making me sweat. Sep 28, 2021 at 12:16
• Anakin would hate it here Jan 4 at 20:45

Thanks for the answers and comments so far. Based on the passage quoted from the book, I feel that indeed, Arrakis is supposed to be a hot place during the days but the film didn't really portray that aspect of the place.

"Kynes and his people turned their attention from these great relationships and focused now on micro-ecology. First, the climate: the sand surface often reached temperatures of 344° to 350° (absolute). A foot below ground it might be 55° cooler; a foot above ground, 25° cooler. Leaves or black shade could provide another 18° of cooling."

• Check kcazllerraf's answer, it has a few points that reinforce the hot aspect of Arrakis in the movie. Oct 28, 2021 at 7:53