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Oscars Check-In: Is ‘Dune’ a Sci-Fi Blockbuster Masterpiece or a Boring Epic?

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> Oscars Check-In: Is ‘Dune’ a Sci-Fi Blockbuster Masterpiece or a Boring Epic?

The second theatrical adaptation of Frank Herbert’s science fiction classic Dune scored the second most Oscar nominations this year, just two less than The Power of the Dog. Does this first part of the Dune series live up to its impressive reputation? Fans of Herbert's novel and newcomers alike will probably be quite impressed!

Plot of ‘Dune’

Dune faithfully covers the first half of the book. The young ducal heir Paul Atreides and his family move to the highly-coveted desert planet Arrakis due to the intricate navigation of political alliances. As the Atreides family takes over the production of a mind-altering substance called spice, their position leads to a conflict that could potentially shift power balances tenuously held between every party, including the secluded Arrakis natives called the Fremen. The destiny of Paul remains incomplete until the following chapter of Dune.

Cast

  • Oscar Isaac - Duke Leto Atreides

  • Rebecca Ferguson - Lady Jessica

  • Timothée Chalamet - Paul Atreides

  • Josh Brolin - Gurney Halleck

  • Stellan Skarsgård - Baron Vladimir Harkonnen

  • Dave Bautista - Glossu Rabban

  • Zendaya - Chani

  • Javier Bardem - Stilgar

Who should watch ‘Dune?’

It depends on your past experiences with deadly-serious sci-fi, but there’s no doubt that Dune is one of the highest-grossing films of 2021 (aside from any affiliated with Disney, that is). A big studio budget means that the effects are top-notch, and Dune delivers with massive battles, CGI to the max, and a giant sandworm sequence. Fair warning that the story of Dune is currently incomplete, and Paul does not officially meet up with Zendaya’s mysterious Fremen character Chani until the very end of the film. For entry into a soon-to-be-completed sci-fi universe, Dune is about as immersive as you can get.

Streaming Options for ‘Dune’

Dune is available for $5.99 rental from streaming services including Apple, Amazon, Google, YouTube, Vudu, Microsoft, Redbox.

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