Dune Part Two review

Dune

The team behind Dune are back with Part Two, completing the adaptation of the first book of the same name by Warner Brothers.

Paul Atreides is back and this time is no longer fighting for his place among the Fremen in Dune Part Two from Warner Brothers. Playing into the hands of his mother and the prophecy she is trying to force into reality, he begins to leads guerrilla style attacks on the Harkonnen forces stationed on the planet. The end goal is to eliminate the threat entirely and retake his place at the head of his Great House and of the planet.

Prior to this version of the story we had multiple attempts at adapting the book, first a movie that included Sting in the cast and a series produced for the Syfy network. Each adaptation more accurate than the last and the two most recent films are not an exception to that. Where these adaptations consistently miss is on the same point, the story is more than just the first book of Frank Herbert’s series. So far only time will tell if the current vision will include the rest of the films but I sincerely hope that they do. Chapterhouse Dune and Heretics of Dune were by far my favorite installments in the main series.

Visually, these two films are an absolute treat, capturing the world of Dune better than any medium outside the books have done. Sufficient time was given to developing the myths within the story that it didn’t rely on the knowledge of the books before watching and the cast did a brilliant job of bringing these characters to life. My only complaint is that the film was made as two films instead of one long epic viewing. I would have gladly sat for the 5-ish hours needed to watch in its entirety as that is the only way this story should be viewed. Would just need an intermission to hit the restroom. Doing this would have allowed the impact of the film to be better felt where coming into the second half of the story means it feels a little disjointed.

The Beekeeper from Warner Brothers

The Beekeeper

Warner Brothers have released their latest action film, The Beekeeper, staring Jason Statham, Jeremy Irons and Josh Hutcherson.

The Beekeeper is the latest action film from Warner Brothers with Jason Statham as the lead and dominating nearly every scene he is in. The film starts with him retired from his years of service and now as a Beekeeper, literally. He helps his neighbor by removing a wasp nest and is more than happy to do so as they are a threat to his hives. Shortly after he leaves, the neighbor receives an alarming message on her computer and is coerced into giving her financial data to a group of scam artists who empty all of her accounts including a charity she works for. Seeing no way to recover the funds she ends her life. Later Adam, Statham’s character, returns with a jar of honey and finds her dead. He starts a one man rampage targeting the group that caused her to end her life, first by burning the building they worked out of to the ground.

The group he worked for was also known as the Beekeepers. Their creation was to protect the society, or hive, as a whole and were given the training to complete their mission how they saw fit. In an actual hive there are designated bees that are known as the Queen Killer with the sole purpose of eliminating a queen that spawned inadequate offspring. That’s basically him. This is important for the story later on.

When I saw trailers for the film I thought it was going to be a mindless action flick without much in the way of story and really was more of a story for the sake of violence. Like most actions films these days. I was not expecting a film of this depth, looking at society as a whole, an officer having to look at their own roles and coming to terms with discovering which is more important- their own desires or their service to the job. Honestly, there are even more layers of depth to the film but I’m not going into all of the aspects. Even when on his rampage, Adam focuses on the people that are really the problem and not those that are having to work for them. Overall I thought the film was fantastic and quite impressed how well they were able to film the violence in a believable way without making it unnecessarily gory. Even when a guy had his fingers sawed off there was virtually no blood. This could be viewed as a detractor from realism but it really aided the story in allowing you to focus more on the story and action than on the blood splatter that tends to draw your attention away. I had an absolute blast watching the film and look forward to seeing what else this team is capable of.

The Departed Steelbook Release

Departed

The Departed is the latest film from Warner Brothers to get a rerelease in 4K HD and this time with an accompanying Steelbook case!

The folks at Warner Brothers have shared another classic film that I’ve been told is a must watch. This time they are doing it in style with a Steelbook case for The Departed. The film follows an Organized Crime boss, Costello, and the two officers tasked with bringing him down. One is a rat and the other is undercover to infiltrate the organization. It becomes a race to uncover who the other is while Costello works to expand his empire.

For anyone that still hasn’t seen the film, NOW is the time to do it. The only thing I knew about the film was the sound track, specifically Shipping Up to Boston from The Dropkick Murphys. The first time I had even heard of this film was while watching the music video from TDM. Watching the film I was surprised how many big names were attached. Seeing that it was done by Martin Scorsese made it make more sense. Start to finish the cast, the acting, the writing, direction, ALL OF IT, was beyond fantastic. No wonder it won FOUR Academy Awards and over a dozen other awards. This film is one of the few instances where the hype truly does not do it justice. Highly recommend watching, I’m already planning my NEXT viewing.

Codenames Harry Potter from USAOpoly.

Codenames Harry Potter

Based on the original by Vlaada Chvatil, Codenames is back with Codenames Harry Potter from USAOpoly.

USAOpoly continues to prove they are the masters locking down the best intellectual properties like Marvel, Disney and even Harry Potter with Codenames Harry Potter. This of course is not their first foray into the magical world of Harry Potter but it is the second one we’ve had the pleasure of trying out.

Visually the game has top quality cards using hires images from the various movies but at a glance the game looks more like a version of Memory. The concept is that as operatives of the Order of the Phoenix you must use clue or “Codenames” to lead your teammates to tracking down the hidden members of the Order. This sounds rather easy but you must do it while avoiding the Death Eaters in the field. As time turner cards are revealed you get closer to running out of time. This puts a bit more urgency in the gameplay and the need to decipher the coded messages more imperative.

The simplicity of the game is quite brilliant in that the game is limited in only how creative you are in creating and deciphering the clues. The game is typically quickly played, the first game taking about 30-45 minutes and followup games closer to the 15-20 minute mark. If you are looking for a quick game that features some of your favorite Harry Potter characters then this is a must purchase for you.