Wednesday 6 March 2024

The movie of Dune Part Two (2024) - good, but a falling-off of quality

I have now seen the second, and concluding, part of the 2021 movie of Dune, which I reviewed a few days ago

While Dune Part Two is a mostly-enjoyable movie, and certainly worth watching (although, take ear-plugs if you are going to watch at the cinema - it is painfully loud in parts) - it is significantly-worse than the superb Part One, and does not end in a satisfying way (a very bad fault in any movie). 

If I gave Part One 9/10 (with only a handful of movies such as Return of the King, When Harry Met Sally, and Blade Runner having a perfect-ten score) - I would award Dune Part Two 7/10. 

I could list the problems (overlong with slackened tension and interest, too-many too-similar fights, too-much action, too consistently noisy); but the basic fact is that Part One was masterly - and gave-off a sense of continuous control and pacing; Part Two just-isn't. 

It's a shame, but it is very difficult to sustain high quality in any of the arts; and a two/ three year gap certainly cannot have helped. 

Plus, whoever decided on the nature of the ending; made a deliberate sacrifice of this movie to facilitate some (presumed) future sequel... 

Never a good idea in my book: and a deliberate slap-in-the-face of the audience. 


Jacob Gittes said...

I agree on your review: I actually did, fortunately, bring my musician's earplugs, and yet my ears were still ringing a bit the next mornning.
The soundtrack was awful. Lots of cacaphony, for no reason.

I'd rate it a bit lower than you did - I actually got extremely bored, because the plot became tiresome. I found the acting of the main characters to be wooden, stiff, and unconvincing.

It just lacked something that the first one had.
There were some good characters, though: the character of Feyd Harkonen was well portrayed. I actually wanted him to win that final fight, just because he made the scenes interesting again!
Oh well... it was entertainment. It tried.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Jacob - Glad to have your endorsement.

The volume and nature of the soundtrack was By Far the most painfully loud I have ever experienced, and this blasting-the-eardrums trick was grossly overused - as if the makers were not confident that the visuals, plot and acting would create an emotional response. It was bad enough that some kind of warning might be indicated, since it seemed sufficient to cause some permanent damage to someone with acute hearing.

I would emphasize that there were several scenes that I thought went very well, and made the film worth watching (but I wont say which, because of spoilers).

I suppose it is worth emphasizing the limitations of the movie, because its reviews and ratings seem to be vastly over-inflated at present - indeed higher than Dune Part One!

(I don't have any explanation for this except that I usually disagree with the majority evaluations on any subject, so it isn't surprising. BTW: I had not looked at reviews before I watched the film. I note, however, that the insightful YouTube reviewer Dave Cullen agrees with us.)

But in reality, Dune Two isn't even a contender for a *great* movie.