Dune: Part Two (2024) Review

By Allison Rose   X Formly Known as Twitter
3 Min Read

The serene beauty of the desert's quiet contrasts starkly with the intense conflict scenes in Dune: Part Two.

In 1965 a science fiction novel by author Frank Herbert, titled Dune, was first published.  Since then, there have been a few attempts to turn it into a movie with no results.  Then in 1984, the David Lynch (Mulholland Drive) film premiered in theaters but was panned by critics.  In 2000, a three-hour, television miniseries ran on the Sci-Fi Channel. 

Almost a decade later, Paramount Pictures launched plans for a remake to be directed by Peter Berg (Patriots Day) but after three years of pre-production, the film was scrapped.  Ten years after that attempt, Legendary Entertainment hired French-Canadian director Denis Villeneuve (Blade Runner 2049) to once again adapt the novel into a movie.  The result was 2021's box office hit, Dune, and the forthcoming, Dune: Part Two which makes its way to theaters this Friday.

Dune: Part Two picks up exactly where the first film left off (I recommend rewatching the first movie to refresh your memory), with Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet; Wonka) and his mother, Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson; Mission: Impossible - Fallout) winning favor with the Fremen - desert people who have learned to survive in the harsh climate of Arrakis. Watching from the shadows the Fremen learn that the House of Harkonnen murdered the House of Atreides as per the emperor's order and are now harvesting the lucrative salt mines on Arrakis.  However, the Fremen have other ideas and eventually teach Paul how to sabotage the Harkonnen, leading to an all-out war between the two factions.

Villeneuve has done two things incredibly well that lends to the success of Dune: Part Two.  The first is choosing a wonderfully talented cast that meshes well together.  From Chalamet and Zendaya (Spider-Man: No Way Home) to Austin Butler (Elvis), Florence Pugh (Don't Worry, Darling), and Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men), everyone brings something unique to their role while blending with the group to make a cohesive team.  Sadly, Christopher Walken (True Romance) does a great Christopher Walken impression but pretty much plays himself as the emperor.

The second is the special effects and cinematography.  The beautiful stillness of the desert, as it lays silently, is in sharp contrast to the violent battles that take place.  Also, the visualization of the sandworm cutting through the dunes and the CGI design of the huge creature as it is being ridden by Paul are painstakingly detailed and gorgeous. Villeneuve seemed to have a clear vision of what he wanted and was given the budget to make it work.

Villeneuve also realized early on that the 896-page novel was too juicy and detailed to be shortened to one two-hour movie, as evidenced by the failure of the 1984 film.  By breaking the story into two movies, each over 180 minutes in length, he had ample time to tell a coherent tale cohesively while setting the stage for an additional movie called Dune Messiah. He also managed to make both movies entertaining and enjoyable without adding too many superfluous moments.

When the trailer was released for Dune back in 2021, I was neither excited for nor dreading the film but once I finally saw it, I thought it was well done and it left me excited for Part Two.  However, two years later when the trailer for Dune: Part Two came out, I once again had a sense it might not be as excellent as I had hoped.  Luckily, Villeneuve proved me wrong once again., as the second installment, while a little long overall, tells the epic story about life, love, and obligation.

Since it is rumored that Villeneuve is now working on adapting the next novel, Dune Messiah, into a movie, I have one thing to say...I can't wait!!!!

Grade: A


Cast:
Directed By:
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 166 minutes
Distributed By: Warner Bros.

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For more information about Dune: Part Two visit the FlickDirect Movie Database. For more reviews by Allison Rose please click here.

Dune: Part Two images are courtesy of Warner Bros.. All Rights Reserved.


FlickDirect, Allison   Rose

Allison Rose, a Senior Correspondent and Critic at FlickDirect, is a dynamic presence in the entertainment industry with a communications degree from Hofstra University. She brings her film expertise to KRMS News/Talk 97.5 FM and broadcast television, and is recognized as a Tomatometer-Approved Critic. Her role as an adept event moderator in various entertainment industry forums underscores her versatility. Her affiliations with SEFCA, the Florida Film Critics Circle, and the Online Film Critics Society highlight her as an influential figure in film criticism and media.




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