Thursday, May 23, 2024

The Epic Interstellar Immersion That is “Dune: Part Two”

“Dune: Part Two” stars an exceptional cast including Timothée Chalamet (“Willy Wonka”), Zendaya (“Euphoria”), Florence Pugh (“Oppenheimer”), and Austin Butler (“Elvis”).

Guided by the calculus that is an ascent to power, “Dune: Part Two” is a breathtaking trip in every sense of the word. Filled with gigantic enemies (sand-worms and Harkonnen alike), prophecies come to light, and adept combat scenes, it’s 165 minutes of flair on the big screen. With its simple and inhospitable desert setting, “Dune” forces the audience to pay attention to the visual play-out rather than to unpack its densely intricate plot. Really, there’s not enough Chapstick in the Known Universe to convince one to visit the barren planet of Arrakis — but it’s compelling enough to watch this fictional epic play out.

“Dune: Part Two” is the complement to Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune: Part One,” both adaptations of Frank Herbert’s 1965 sci-fi series. It follows Paul Atreides, a nimble and charming protagonist whose journey is to fulfill the age-old prophecy of Lisan al Gaib. This prophecy anticipates a messiah who will rise to save the Fremen people of Arrakis, a planet which harvests melange (or “spice”) — an invaluable commodity that makes interstellar travel possible and extends life. In many ways fated into his role as Maud’Dib (“The Tamer”), Paul hovers between being like a brother to the Fremen people and becoming their revered leader. It feels at first that he’s disinterested in power (just good with a sword), until he is forced to drink the Water of Life — a blue-tinted poison that reveals horrific truths to Paul and ignites his desire to fight this interplanetary battle.

While Paul’s ascent from nervous youth to valorous leader is the film’s main focus, “Dune: Part Two” would be remiss without its supporting cast. In particular, Austin Butler of “Elvis” fame plays the psychopathic Feyd-Rautha, a malicious and cunning Harkonnen warrior who acts as Paul’s greatest foe. Butler is eerily good at being bad: with razor-sharp cheekbones and a devilish smile, it’s difficult to think of a better villain in recent films. And one can’t not mention Paul’s love interest Chani, a fearless Fremen warrioress who acts as a guide and savior in her own right — expertly portrayed by the enthralling Zendaya.

Driven by ambition and greed, “Dune: Part Two” lacks romanticization — and instead acts as a fantastic representation of betrayal, zealotry, and the worrisome threat of an apocalyptic war. It’s one best experienced on the biggest screen you can find.

Movie Times: Click Here

Genre: Action, Science Fiction

Director: Denis Villeneuve

Actors: Austin Butler, Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Florence Pugh, Stellan Skarsgård, and Zendaya

Run Time: 2 hrs, 46 min

Rating: PG-13 for Sequences of Strong Violence, Brief Strong Language, Some Suggestive Material

Caroline Minchella
Caroline Minchella
Caroline was 15 years old when her family moved to Coronado. Though she was a “transplant”, Caroline found a home in the Coronado community near-immediately: she became an intern for “The Coronado Times”; helped reinstate the CHS newspaper, “The Islander Times”; was a volunteer dog-walker for PAWS; and a faithful Concert in the Park attendee.After completing her BA in English at the University of California Santa Barbara, she went on to craft answers for Amazon Alexa devices and write creatively on the side. Fast forward seven years, Caroline is thrilled to return as a Reporter for “The Coronado Times.” Have a story for The Coronado Times to cover? Send news tips or story ideas to: [email protected]

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