DUNE: PART TWO – Review by Susan Granger

Denis Villeneuve’s mythic sci-fi sequel Dune: Part Two has already grossed $500 million globally, making it the highest-grossing film of 2024 – domestic and worldwide – surpassing the first film, released back in 2021. Based on Frank Herbert’s anti-imperial, ecologically dystopian Dune saga, it revolves around Paul (Timothee Chalamet), heir to the House of Atreides, wiped out in Part One under the fascist aegis of grotesque, genocidal Baron Vladimir Harkonnen (Stellan Skarsgard). As with any franchise, seeing the first installment is vital to understanding the second. Written by Villeneuve and Jon Spaihts with an emphasis on action – as opposed to exposition and character-development – this shallow, self-important sequel runs 2 hours, 46 minutes, dominated by Grieg Fraser’s spectacular cinematography and Hans Zimmer’s propulsive score.

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DUNE: PART TWO – Review by Valerie Kalfrin

“Power over Spice is power over all,” a voice intones before the film even begins, which is about as much backstory as Dune: Part Two allows, The script by Villeneuve and returning co-writer Jon Spaihts picks up largely where the 2021 film left off—and ends on an ambivalent note, even after two hours and 46 minutes. Thankfully, while the earlier film handled a lot of table setting, this one dives right into the action, unfurling at a brisk pace. While the ending implies plenty more story to tell, Dune: Part Two for now crafts an immersive sci-fi adventure.

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DUNE: Part Two – Review by T. J. Callahan

This sprawling, blockbuster was green lit for a sequel seconds after Part One hit the big screen in 2021. The sci-fi romantic adventure of warring families is The Ten Commandments meets Star Wars. Timothee Chalamet is the Moses of Arrakis riding sand worms in pursuit of a better life for his chosen people. Dune: Part Two is why we go to the movies. Read up on the legend beforehand, especially if you haven’t seen Part One, settle in with some popcorn and marvel at what masterful filmmaking is all about.

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DUNE: Part Two – Review by Susan Kamyab

The second installment picks up where it left off with Paul uniting with Chani and the Fremen to seek revenge against the conspirators who destroyed his family. Director and co-writer, Denis Villeneuve properly brings this science fiction novel to life. Beginning with the mesmerizing world he’s created. Desert sand has never looked this attractive; swirling through the winds and fight sequences, paired with a roaring soundtrack that will make you truly feel as if you are in the movie. The set is immersive and the work, especially the cinematography by Greig Fraser, that has gone into this imaginative society is engaging without any dialogue or action.

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WONKA – Review by Susan Kamyab

Wonka tells the colorful tale of how the world’s greatest inventor, magician and chocolate-maker became the beloved Willy Wonka we know today. In the film a young and poor Willy dreams of opening a shop in a city renowned for its chocolate, but soon discovers that the industry is run by a cartel of greedy chocolatiers. The film features an all-star cast including Timothee Chalamet, Olivia Coleman, Hugh Grant, and Keegan-Michael Key.

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WONKA – Review by Cortland Jacoby

The moment I knew Warner Bros.’ Wonka was in good hands was during the rousing opening number. As Timothée Chalamet sings of all the chocolate and opportunity he will create when he settles in this new city, there is a moment where the music slows down. Donned in Wonka’s iconic top hat, he starts walking down the stairs before taking two quick steps back up. It’s an early nod to the beloved and brilliant Gene Wilder performance of the original. Wonka is full of these small little references meant to reassure you as you venture further into this new story.

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WONKA – Review by T.J. Callahan

If you can’t wait until Christmas to open your gifts, Wonka is a big box of sweet dreams. It’s the origin story of the creative confectioner who was concocted from the mind of iconic children’s author, Roald Dahl and now brought back to life by writer/director Paul King (Paddington). The ever-charming Timothee Chalamet dons the magical top hat to tell the tale of how a poor young man with a love of chocolate and a dream became the beloved candyman, Willy Wonka. He sings. He dances. And he does it well. He’s the Mary Poppins of cocoa beans.

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BONES AND ALL – Review by T. J. Callahan

Bones and All, based on a YA novel of the same name, stars Timothee Chalamet and Taylor Russell as the wayward young couple searching for who they are and who’s going to be their next meal. Character actor extraordinaire, Mark Rylance is Sully, a seasoned people-eater who’s
equal parts mentor and maniac. Director Luca Guadagnino mixes the bloody horror he orchestrated in Suspiria with the peachy romance from Call Me By Your Name as we follow the pair across the Midwest in stolen vehicles with stolen dreams.

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BONES AND ALL – Review by Diane Carson

Bones and All uses cannibalism to argue for compassion. Of the many truly terrific fifteen films I saw at the Telluride Film Festival this past year, Bones and All is the only film I can not wholeheartedly recommend. For it presents, with some reserve, cannibals, those who in fact are the living eating the living. And director Luca Guadagnino introduces it without holding back in an early scene.

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