February 21, 2024
By: Logan Wischmeier | February 21st, 2024

Dune: Part Two is finally here and wow! It does not disappoint. As someone who believes in many ways that Part One is a masterpiece, I had very high standards for the sequel to live up to, and I believe it has met them all. This review will be non-spoilers and is coming from someone who has never read the book but will spoil Part One if you have not seen it.

Denis Villeneuve continues to build from the cinematic world he introduced in Part One, with new locations, and diving into characters and societies that we have not yet seen. Villeneuve’s direction is astounding once again. As a viewer, sometimes a film feels disjointed, and many times that gives a sense that the director wasn’t 100% prepared for the script or story they were telling, but Villeneuve has never given me that feeling with Dune. He is so sure of his storytelling that he jumps from planet to planet or from present day to a vision sequence with ease, and it all feels seamless. Because of his confidence, Dune feels more like a reenactment of true events than a science fiction film.

Performances in this film are once again fantastic. While I miss the charisma and chemistry that Oscar Isaac and Jason Mamoa had in Part One, Javier Bardem and Zendaya pick up and run with it in very different but successful ways here in Part Two. Bardem’s Stilgar especially surprised me this time around. He is comedic relief in some scenes, but also a powerfully faith-based character, who’s personality is on display much more here. Others like Rebecca Ferguson are fantastic once again but have taken a step back to be much more of a supporting role than previously, while Christopher Walken and Florence Pugh have such small but meaningful roles that I don’t have much to say about them. Austin Butler as the psychotic Feyd-Rautha completely disappears into this role though. Like Stellan Skarsgård as the Baron, his makeup allows for him to take the gloves off and be a true freak, and it is a joy to watch. Butler has already been Elvis, but I think we just learned he could be so much more in the future.

Cinematography is once again a massive highlight. Greig Fraser absolutely blew me away, especially during the first and third acts of this film. There are several shots that you know were planned early on to be jaw droppers, and he nails it. His talents are on full display and are a huge reason to see this film on the biggest screen you can find. The team of Villeneuve and Fraser make bouncing back and forth between large spectacle and close-up, quiet, character moments feel natural to the story.

Overall, I am incredibly satisfied with Dune: Part Two! I believe we have a new sci-fi/fantasy epic franchise on our hands, that will continue to inspire and show what can be done on the big screen for many years to come. This feels like a Star Wars or The Lord of the Rings is in theaters again, and I would love to see more stories continuing to build on this world in the future. Once you’ve had the chance to see Dune: Part Two, come back here and let us know your thoughts!

DUNE: PART TWO will release in theaters and IMAX nationwide on March 1st, 2024.

Rating: 4.9 out of 5

LoganLogan Wischmeier (Contributing Editor) is a Texas native and a massive fan of all genres of film. You can find him talking about movies on YouTube or in line for the latest Star Wars/Comic Book film.
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