Thursday, September 17, 2009

Film Review: District 9

Because of the awesome road trip I went on in August, I’m a little late getting to see this movie, so most people will already have heard plenty about it by now. Because of this, my review will be brief. Essentially, District 9 is a story about alien refugees who have been forced into in a ghetto in Johannesburg, South Africa, where they are subject to deplorable conditions and vicious racism (obvious message is obvious… and rather late). The aliens are about to be relocated to a new ghetto, and the main character has been tasked with heading up this operation. Things, of course, don’t go according to plan and something terrible happens to the character that places him into a pivotal role in events that could change everything.

District 9 is a pretty good science fiction movie that seeks to portray the horrors of racism, mercenary corporations and weapons dealers. The plot and setting are interesting and the film is well directed, unfortunately I had trouble enjoying a lot of the movie because the main character is a spineless prick. Furthermore, the film also degenerates into a rather typical action climax. I can’t say more regarding the character and finale without spoiling the end, but the way things work out did much to redeem the movie in my eyes.

A friend of mine told me that the aliens in this film were well portrayed as truly alien, but I didn’t really see this. To me they still seemed like humans who happened to look different (and who have an odd addiction, but that’s an old trick and not particularly inspired).

If you like science fiction and haven’t seen this movie yet, you should probably check it out, but I’d wait till it comes out on DVD. Also, be warned that there’s quite a bit of harsh language and gore throughout.