The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Review | ‘Dune: Part Two’: A modern sci-fi classic unlike anything else

Photo courtesy of IMDb
Poster of Dune: Part Two.

Rating: 9/10


What is hope? Is it a beacon of light for those who are lost or a false belief for those who cannot accept the truth? That is the question that “Dune: Part Two” and its characters seemingly try to answer.

“Dune: Part Two” is the sequel to 2021’s “Dune,” directed by Denis Villeneuve, and continues the film adaptation of Frank Herbert’s “Dune” book series, which started in 1965.

Without going into specifics, the film follows Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet) as he learns the ways of the Fremen people to free them by taking revenge on the Harkonnens. 

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Additionally, Paul sees a future that is full of destruction and despair, leaving him to take on the mantle of a prophecy he may not even believe in to stop it.

The movie has a slight theme of religion and provides perspective on the beliefs that come with following a fulfillment of prophecy. We see the majority of characters fall on one of two sides of a coin, with one side fully believing the prophecy to its fullest extent and the other side seeing the prophecy as a means to enslave their people.

Hope is a double-edged sword in “Dune: Part Two,” as many characters find themselves clinging to hope as a way to guide them in a time when they may need it. However, when that hope is cut short, or doesn’t meet expectations, anger and sadness are the only remaining factors.

One of the highlights of the film is the talented — and large — cast of actors, which includes Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya and Rebbeca Ferguson. 

Each of these actors not only fully understands and respects the characters they play, but portrays them with a level of complexity that feels as if they were ripped directly from the books.

Another great aspect of “Dune: Part Two” is its catalog of villains and the conflicts they bring forth for Paul and the Fremen. 

These conflicts add a great amount of tension and suspense, which make the movie’s villains more compelling as well as threatening.

Throughout the two-hour-and-46-minute runtime, the movie would have benefited from more time with its villains and the world they came from, as the film shines the most when it shows off the lives of not only Paul and the other protagonists but the lives of those going against him.

More action sequences were also included in this sequel, which was not only entertaining and engaging but also demonstrated the amazing choreography in each sequence.

Alongside the addition of action, there was also an increase in the franchise’s worldbuilding, which gave an interesting insight into the politics and ideals seen within this complex universe.

By increasing the level of action and world-building in “Dune: Part Two,” viewers were more likely to be enamored with the story and setting at hand, placing them in the shoes of Paul and the rest of the cast.

“Dune: Part Two” also had the privilege of being filmed entirely for IMAX. If you have access to a local IMAX theater, you can watch the film the way it was intended to be shown, with roughly 26% more of the picture being shown compared to a standard showing of a movie.

The digital IMAX cut of “Dune: Part Two” alternates between the IMAX-standard 1.43:1 ratio and 1.90:1 ratio

This essentially means that, unlike standard showings of “Dune: Part Two” with the two black bars above and below the screen, the IMAX version will not only be played on a bigger screen but will show more — if not all — of what was originally filmed.

This is crucial to keep in mind, as one of the key factors of “Dune: Part Two” and the rest of the series as a whole is the overall scale and magnitude of the story. There are many moments in the movie where the beauty of what is happening on-screen is jaw-dropping.

The cinematography in the film is immaculate. Even then, it feels like an understatement to just summarize it in one word. Cinematographer Greig Fraser perfectly captures the beauty of the world around the characters, all while portraying the essence of what makes “science fiction” a science fiction.

IMAX theaters and auditoriums are additionally known for having powerful and dynamic sound systems, and this film knows how to make the most of it. The movie already has a rich and powerful sound design, but when you pair that with the IMAX speakers, the result is pure, aural bliss.

The speakers also helped out the score of the film, which was composed by Hans Zimmer. The compositions are not only fitting for intense moments, but they also light up the auditorium making people shake in their seats as the powerful music vibrates the theater to its core.

“Dune: Part Two” is without a doubt one of the best pieces of sci-fi media ever, as it brings a level of spectacle that is not seen with other franchises and stories. 

Only time will tell how long it’ll be until we see the next chapter in the “Dune” story, but for now, fans and newcomers alike will enjoy the world brought to life in “Dune: Part Two.”

This is a movie that deserves and almost demands you to watch it on the biggest screen possible — it very much earns that viewing experience. 

Visit your local theater, grab your exclusive “Dune: Part Two” popcorn bucket and watch one of the best movies 2024 has to offer so far.


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