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View Poll Results: District 9 - Your grade
Excellent 91 61.07%
Above Average 39 26.17%
Average 11 7.38%
Below Average 5 3.36%
Poor 3 2.01%
Voters: 149. You may not vote on this poll

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Old August 14 2009, 04:59 PM   #1
Captain Craig
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District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Taking my cue from the anticipation thread I'm going to start a thread for discussion on District 9.



I saw this at a sneak last night and thought it was a pretty good movie.
It gets 3/4 stars or Above Average.

Its not terribly original but it tales a good story using plenty of elements you've seen before. Granted its tough to be "new" when so much as been done and I give this film credit for combining so much in a way that it doesn't feel spliced together but that it is its own thing.

You will find elements of Independece Day(right there on the poster), The Fly, Alien Nation, and Schindlers List. Some may see more.

I found that as I watched the movie my feelings for who I was rooting for changed during the course of the movie. It is telling a social message about what we as an overall society have done to each other thru the centuries.

I recommend it as a movie you'll get your price of admission for. I can't say for certain that its a movie I must own when it comes out. A second viewing will help me more.

Other early poster commentary.
Samuel Walters:
Just saw a midnight showing. It's got some serious oversight problems, conceptually speaking. But on a technical standpoint (cinematography, VFX, action, characterization) it works fairly well.
Jackson Archer:
Just came back from a midnight showing. District 9 is easily one of the best films I've seen all year, and along with Star Trek and Moon, it's been one hellueva year for sci-fi.
Metal Pants:
Saw it myself. I don't think it is an "OMFG go see teh movie it rox!!!!1111" type of thing, but yeah, a good flick. worth the price of admission.
Trubinator:
I caught the midnight showing as well ... lots of talent at work in the movie. The director is clearly somebody we should have on our radar, and the guy who played Wikus was quite good. But the movie was also disappointing overall. It tried to do too many things and in the process was unable to do any of them very well. Perhaps on a second viewing, things will be more clear. But after digesting things, at present, I'm giving it 2/4 stars.
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Old August 14 2009, 05:53 PM   #2
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Yeah, this was a decent sci-fi flick as far as action, setting, and VFX are concerned. Blomkamp clearly has a measure of skill at his craft. But, for my part, the glaring neglect of the real-world Apartheid in South Africa (which was still there when the aliens arrived) undermines the film's legitimacy and integrity. You can still enjoy the film, but its message is both too obvious and sorely mishandled.

Bottom line: It's above average, but not by a whole lot.
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Old August 14 2009, 07:25 PM   #3
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

I must say the poster is kinda cool. As opposed to promotions cranking up the hype of "come one, come all" this one is saying "You are not welcome here" and "Humans not allowed" plays with the counter intuitive.

I'm seeing this tomorrow and I look forward to it.
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Old August 14 2009, 08:51 PM   #4
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Just got back.

It *absolutely freaking rocks*.
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Old August 15 2009, 01:27 AM   #5
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Best. Movie. Of 2009.
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Old August 15 2009, 01:32 AM   #6
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Samuel Walters wrote: View Post
Yeah, this was a decent sci-fi flick as far as action, setting, and VFX are concerned. Blomkamp clearly has a measure of skill at his craft. But, for my part, the glaring neglect of the real-world Apartheid in South Africa (which was still there when the aliens arrived) undermines the film's legitimacy and integrity.
Um, I'd think that it's understandable that everyone on the planet would be distracted from the man-on-man Apartheid when ALIENS LAND ON THE FUCKING EARTH. Besides, after 28 years, things go back to normal pretty fast, so it's not as if they take the stage entirely.

I honestly don't understand this point. What the fuck did you want them to do? They were addressing actual apartheid, through the use of alien stand-ins. If they did actual apartheid, a lot of people wouldn't bother even seeing it. Using aliens draws more people into dealing with concepts that they otherwise wouldn't give two fucks over if they saw actual black people being treated this way.

It's called literary allusion. Look it up.
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Old August 15 2009, 01:43 AM   #7
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

I won't be able to see it until next weekend by the earliest. The posters look bad ass, have seen all the viral marketing bus ads and building ads are very cool. I'm curious about the score though if there are plans to release it. Haven't seen anything on it.
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Old August 15 2009, 01:53 AM   #8
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

If the movie had tried to make some overt statement about Apartheid we'd have tons of people screaming it was going for a cheap sensationalism angle by having such a /serious/ issue in a mere sci-fi flick. So in hindsight I think Blomkamp made the right call.

Besides, South Africa today isn't the one of 28 years ago, and while its history is very important, this is an entertainment film. Not a film that exists just to promote a political message. As it stands, this movie still has a far more authentic look at the general aura of modern day South Africa than most of what you see (which should say something terrible about most of what you see).

Not to pull a rank card (really) but I can remark for trivia that my significant other comes from South Africa originally and gives the film a big thumbs up for how it uses the country as a backdrop.
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Old August 15 2009, 02:01 AM   #9
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Kaijima wrote: View Post
If the movie had tried to make some overt statement about Apartheid we'd have tons of people screaming it was going for a cheap sensationalism angle by having such a /serious/ issue in a mere sci-fi flick. So in hindsight I think Blomkamp made the right call.

Besides, South Africa today isn't the one of 28 years ago, and while its history is very important, this is an entertainment film. Not a film that exists just to promote a political message. As it stands, this movie still has a far more authentic look at the general aura of modern day South Africa than most of what you see (which should say something terrible about most of what you see).

Not to pull a rank card (really) but I can remark for trivia that my significant other comes from South Africa originally and gives the film a big thumbs up for how it uses the country as a backdrop.
That's awesome that your other liked the way South Africa is handled. How did he/she like the film itself?
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Old August 15 2009, 02:42 AM   #10
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

So, does anyone not like this movie? We left about halfway through... it was so tedious to watch. It was really disappointing, because I was really looking forward to it. Oh well, I guess.

I still can't figure out why people want to like movies that make you feel like crap.
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Old August 15 2009, 02:47 AM   #11
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

I thought it was great. Well-acted, intense, gritty, and considering the budget was only $30 million, featured some great special effects. And it actually had some humor in it...Terminator Salvation could have learned something from it.

Sharlto Copley was fantastic and I think he's going to be a big star. Of course, the most well-done character is that of Christopher.
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Old August 15 2009, 03:10 AM   #12
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Not at all what I expected. Very good movie all the same. Considering it was fairly action/adventure heavy toward the end, it never lost the feel of being grounded firmly in a believable reality.

I'm surprised to read the budget was so low. Every penny must be on screen.
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Old August 15 2009, 03:25 AM   #13
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

USS Mariner wrote: View Post
Um, I'd think that it's understandable that everyone on the planet would be distracted from the man-on-man Apartheid when ALIENS LAND ON THE FUCKING EARTH.

***

I honestly don't understand this point. What the fuck did you want them to do? They were addressing actual apartheid, through the use of alien stand-ins. If they did actual apartheid, a lot of people wouldn't bother even seeing it. Using aliens draws more people into dealing with concepts that they otherwise wouldn't give two fucks over if they saw actual black people being treated this way.
I wanted an actual acknowledgment of historical fact.

Look, the film is, by and large, very well done and, on many levels, I found the character interactions to be quite moving. There is value to its central commentary about how humanity treats people who are different. But I won't ignore, gloss over, or excuse the fact that there's no mention whatsoever of what was actually taking place in South Africa at the time these aliens arrived.

D9 is a movie about Apartheid-like conditions, set in South Africa. The significant event of the arrival of aliens took place during Apartheid. There is no mention whatsoever of how that event affected the very real Apartheid that was taking place. If this film wants to be a serious commentary on "actual Apartheid" (as you put it), for it to ignore the historical context of Apartheid in its chosen setting of South Africa is a mistake. What better way to inform viewers about Apartheid than by mentioning and addressing historical fact somewhere in the film? Failure to do so devalues the very real sacrifices people made and glosses over the atrocities committed.

The film didn't have to be about South African Apartheid, but it did have to at least explicitly confront the issue somewhere in its narrative.
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Old August 15 2009, 03:50 AM   #14
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

It was awesome.

That is all.
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Old August 15 2009, 03:57 AM   #15
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

TheArsenal wrote: View Post
Not at all what I expected. Very good movie all the same. Considering it was fairly action/adventure heavy toward the end, it never lost the feel of being grounded firmly in a believable reality.

I'm surprised to read the budget was so low. Every penny must be on screen.
Agreed. The film is gritty and the action feels real for the most part.
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