Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Here, Some Fast Dune 2 Thoughts

I posted a shorter version of this on Twitter (see it here) but what the hell, I'll elaborate a bit here on MNPP proper just in case Twitter sinks into the muck eventually (slash tomorrow) and since it doesn't seem I'm writing up a review of Dune 2 anywhere else. But I'm still going to keep this brief though because I weirdly don't have a ton to say? Even though I quite liked the movie. It's as promised even more epic than the first one -- Villenueve's sense of scale is basically unmatched right now, and there are shots here that will take your breath away. We're truly blessed that someone with his visual eye has had this amount of money tossed at him -- nobody has made world building feel quite so definitive. 

Because watching Dune 2 you really and truly feel as if an entire fucking world has been built right in front of you. An entire fucking universe. And it feels so much bigger and more consequential than anything Marvel has ever accomplished because there are actual ideas at work here -- ideas about religion and politics and not just "I gots bad Daddy issues, wahhh." Although yes there's some Daddy issues too, for good measure. 

Though its Mommy Issues are more exciting, given how Rebecca Ferguson basically walks away with the entire film. Everything Villenueve is saying about religion here is absolutely vicious (and, you know, spot on) and Ferguson (and to a less seen but no less vicious extent Charlotte Rampling) relishes the shit out of it -- like she did in Doctor Sleep she's so good at being so cold-hearted and weird and cruel! I bow down, really and truly. She is the queen we demand.

As for the much touted Austin Butler as Feyd-Rautha he certainly looks very cool but I wasn't terribly impressed by him. Ferguson, Rampling, Stellan Skarsgård, Christopher Walken, hell even Dave Bautista drip with more menace -- I just didn't buy him as intimidating no matter how hard the make-up was working. He felt like a dopey kid playing dress-up. The big duel between him and Timothée is terrifically staged and choreographed, though. 

Speaking of, Timothée is good -- like he did in The King he surprises me every time he can muster a genuine sense of command; that the waif-like frailty we all know and love doesn't snap under the pressure of screaming orders at enormous crowds. That said I found it hysterically funny how big his hair got in the last act as Paul gets more powerful -- I guess Damian in Mean Girls was right. But it's a real Sigourney in Ghostbusters Gatekeeper type glow-up, volume-wise. He got a blow out. Power blow!

Okay those were more words than I anticipated rambling off. Shout out to the score too -- an absolute banger that I keep refreshing every website to see if the vinyl has been dropped yet. And needless to say the costumes astonish -- some truly Excalibur level cornball nonsense going on, but dialed up to ten thousand -- I love it. Anyway the movie is good! Better than the last one, and I liked the last one. It's annoying that it is another unfinished story -- especially with Villenueve bitching about the movies becoming television in interviews; dude, you're just giving us super-sized episodes of a Dune show here when it comes down to it. But I will keep tuning in.

1 comment:

Shawny said...

The Villeneuve version was so good, it made me even more sad that David Lynch had so bungled his film.