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Dune: Part Two movie review – Sand and Spice and Worms are Nice

Director: Denis Villeneuve
Starring: Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson, Josh Brolin, Austin Butler, Florence Pugh, Dave Bautista, Christopher Walken, Léa Seydoux, Souheila Yacoum, Stellan Skarsgård, Charlotte Rampling, and Javier Bardem
Movie Length: 2 hours 45 minutes

It’s been 3 years since Dune, a gap lengthened by strikes in the entertainment industry. I remember liking it, but it wasn’t compelling enough to rewatch given its 2 hour 35 minute runtime. My main complaint about the first part of this remake series was its random ending point.  t didn’t give any sense of closure and it didn’t set up any sort of effective cliffhanger. Given the length of time since I saw the first movie and the disappointing ending, I wasn’t sure what to expect with the sequel. Thankfully, Dune: Part Two does a much better job of setting up a conflict and reaching some sort of conclusion, while leaving room for the inevitable Dune: Part Three.

Dune does an admirable job of adapting dense source material, a classic series of books by Frank Herbert. Dune definitely takes its task of universe building seriously. Having dumped a lot of exposition in Part One, Part Two has much better pace. There is still a ton of geopolitical/religious/prophecy, but there are also more fight sequences interspersed throughout the movie.  

While Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet) is still the focus of the film, we get a better look into what is going on with the Emperor (played by a restrained Christopher Walken) and the Harkonnen family. Austin Butler and Stellan Skarsgård are perfectly creepy bad guys. Javier Bardem is another highlight, while Florence Pugh’s character largely falls flat (which is a shame because I usually like her work). Finally, I can’t write a review without noting that there are some shockingly clunky lines, particularly when Paul is trying to woo Zendaya’s Chani. 

The best compliment I can give Dune: Part Two is it is a gorgeous film. Everything from set design, to costumes, to the differing color palette for each world is stunning. Dune manages to establish futuristic vehicles and weapons while at the same time feeling retro and gritty. Oh, and there are more sandworms in the film. You can never have enough sandworms.

Dune is far from perfect (I tend to get annoyed with the prophecy vision movie crutch), but it is an excellent book adaptation. While it tended to meander a bit, giving a feeling of being lost in the desert, the ending felt satisfying. I do recommend seeing the first film or reading the books before seeing Dune: Part Two. Fans of epic sci fi with rich worldbuilding will likely enjoy Dune.

My Score: B

Dune: Part Two is now in theaters.

Are you going to see the movie? Have you already? Feel free to leave a comment below or chat with us on Twitter/X at @TheConCollectve, Threads at @theconventioncollective, or Bluesky at @theconcollective.bsky.social

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Darren Shulman
Darren Shulman
Darren is a professional lawyer and amateur movie/comic/TV reviewer who is lucky enough to have found a wife who is into the same geeky things he is. Darren has been making the trip from Ohio to San Diego Comic-Con since 2009. Other interests include, in no particular order: monkeys, LEGO, dinosaurs, and playing basketball poorly.

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