Dune: Part Two movie poster

Dune: Part Two

In theaters March 1, 2024

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163 minutes

Directed by:

Starring: , , , , ,

We can all admit that Dune: Part Two (2024) is for a very specific group of people, but fortunately for the rest of us, it’s as engaging and visually stunning as promised.

Paul Atraides (Timothée Chalamet) is now firmly entrenched with the Freman and begins his training to fight with them to free Arrakis from the Emperor (Christopher Walken) for control of their own planet. His relationship with Chandi (Zendaya) deepens as the elder Fremen come to believe he’s the Lisan al Gaib, their mythical savior. Meanwhile the other Houses amass their armies to fight for control of Arrakis, introducing a new villain into the mix, Feyd-Rautha (Austin Butler), the sadistic champion and heir of House Harkonnen. As Paul and Lady Jessica move through ritual and personal strife, Paul reluctantly comes to see how his destiny is not in his own hands, no matter how idealistic he feels.

If all of this sounds like a soapy space opera, you’re doing just fine. It’s even safe to say you don’t even need to see the first Dune (2021) to understand everything going on in Dune: Part Two. Denis Villeneuve takes his vision of Frank Herbert’s 1965 epic as far as modern technology will allow. The dry sepia sands of Arrakis, the cold foreboding warships of House Harkonnen, the stark black and white gladiator fights of Feyd-Rautha – every scene breathes as its own character. This isn’t rambling storytelling that needs to look back to make sure you’re still following. It frankly doesn’t care. As the audience, we’re meant to observe how this universe spools out to its inevitable, with all of the love, scheming, betrayal and ruthless death it has.

The soundscape of Dune: Part Two alone is worth the price of admission. Villeneuve carefully weaves sight with sound to create an immersive experience, whether you’re watching in an IMAX theater or home on an adequately kitted television. Familiar faces, like Florence Pugh, Léa Seydoux, and Dave Bautista don’t take away from the story, but rather become meshed into the mythology. This is solid acting with deft direction making a lengthy adaptation feel less like installments. This is not a movie that feels like two hours and forty-five minutes. Fan or not, it’s very easy to sit back and munch popcorn and still find yourself invested in the future of Paul, Chandi, and Arrakis, even peripherally.

Dune: Part Two (2024) is rated PG-13 for explosions, sword-fighting, death, baths of goo, slave torture, gauzy sexytimes, broken hearts, people getting stabbed, shot, thrown off buildings, and the toothsome maw of sandworms.

Dune: Part Two is streaming now on the following services:
Movie Reelist Contributor: MontiLee Stormer
MontiLee Stormer is a writer of horror, dark and urban fantasy. She’s also is a troublemaker, concocting acts of mayhem and despair for her own selfish pleasure. An avid movie watcher, she prefers horror but will see just about anything if you're buying. Poltergeist (1982) is her favorite movie and she actively hates The Shining (1980) due to its racism, misogyny, the butchering of the source material. She could host a TEDtalk on this single subject. Writing about herself in the third person is just a bonus.

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