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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 16 2009, 11:19 AM   #61
Yoda
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

I thought the movie kicked a lot of ass. I'm a sucker for faux documentary shaky cam, so that didn't bother me one bit.

As for the Apartheid thing. Oh for Christ's sake who cares? I avoided spoilers for this movie pretty well, so I didn't even know going in that it was set in South Africa. I think this is just the case of people having preconceptions about what a movie is. You knew it was in South Africa, you knew it had allegorical elements in regard to Apartheid, and you manufactured an image of what the movie was that wasn't accurate.

Boo hoo!

Obviously the aliens appeared during the Apartheid era, which is only seen briefly for the purposes of giving background on the ALIENS, WHO WERE THE FOCUS OF THE DAMN MOVIE, and the rest of the movie takes place in the near future, where presumably Apartheid had ended in much the same way as it did in our reality. The allegory is for us to pick up on our own, not to be beaten into our heads with a sledgehammer. To the characters in the movie the alien issue isn't as obvious a parallel to apartheid because the aliens are SCARY SPACE INSECTS. If you had someone in the film say "this is just like how black people were treated in this country and it's wrong", it would be eye-roll inducing and lame.

The movie felt somewhat inspired by Half-Life 2 and maybe video games in general. The weapons were cool, in a 'video game meets reality' kind of way that I hadn't really seen before. What with the lightning guns exploding people, gravity gun knockoffs, etc.. I loved the whole look and feel of the film from top to bottom. The action sequences were all pretty cool, and for the 30 million budget they did a fantastic job.

What was the budget on that piece of shit GI Joe? The effects work in this was far more effective. Whereas District 9 at times 'felt' like a video game, GI Joe just 'looked' like a video game.

I do have some issues with some of the story logic, but I guess they left the alien stuff vague enough to where the story logic isn't bad enough for me to feel insulted. I do wonder why they had to scavenge their own technology for 20 years on planet Earth where presumably they could've collected their tech and filled up their little magic galactic warp power canister much more quickly on their ship. Given the level of oppression they faced and the weapons technology at their disposal I would've thought they could've mounted an effective resistance. I know they said that they were 'stupid worker bee prawns' or whatever, it just seemed a little off. Also, I wouldn't have minded some explanation on how they had learned each others' languages well enough to communicate, but watchagonnado?

As for having 'cliched plot elements', I'd hate to break it to you, but truly original plots are very few and far between. It's all in the execution, and I thought District 9 executed exceedingly well. I'd love to see where they'd go with a District 10, three years from now. Bring on the retaliatory alien invasion baby!
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Old August 16 2009, 01:11 PM   #62
chrisspringob
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Yoda wrote: View Post
Given the level of oppression they faced and the weapons technology at their disposal I would've thought they could've mounted an effective resistance. I know they said that they were 'stupid worker bee prawns' or whatever, it just seemed a little off.
I forget if this was mentioned explicitly, but the impression I got was that the aliens were forced to disown any use of their weapons. Yes, they could try to resist, but the humans would then end up just killing them all. While their weapons were powerful, they didn't seem to be nearly powerful enough to defend them against the combined military power of the whole world, which is what it come to if there was a showdown. The humans could just carpet bomb them from the air, and there's little that they'd be able to do to defend themselves.
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Old August 16 2009, 02:38 PM   #63
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

The readers ratings and comments are the highest I have ever seen over at Metacritic

http://www.metacritic.com/film/titles/district9

And over at RT readers have it at 90%
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Old August 16 2009, 02:59 PM   #64
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Dark Journey wrote: View Post
I just got back from it. In my opinion this is arguably one of the ten worst films I have ever seen. A completely formulaic story that once again recycles the evil corporation/military hunting some guy for a secret he possesses. The opening documentary style narrative goes on far too long and ends up having little to do with the film. The attempt to go back and for the from the documentary to the real action was handles amateurishly. This is also a film of convenience where things exist simply because they need to to advance the plot. The bad guys were bad simply because there needed to be bad guys. The kind of film where once you get out you have a million questions that are a variation on "well why did this happen"?
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Old August 16 2009, 03:18 PM   #65
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Trekker4747 wrote: View Post

Much of the movie is filmed "Cloverfield"-style as if done with hand-held cameras as some of the premise is around a COPS-style documentary of the agents walking around thee slum to get the aliens to sign their relocation papers. If there's one "drawback" to the movie it's that these "documentary" scenes (with the actors talking to the camera) blend in seamlessly with the typical camera/"foruth wall POV" most movies use (as these scenes are also done with a hand-held camera style) so at times it can be confusing if we're watching the "documentary" or if we're watching "from our own prespective."
I was immensely impressed with the documentary filming sequences because cameramen aren't supposed to be shit at their job, which may be why you didn't see much difference between the "real-time" and documentary segments.

This is the main problem with most attempts at shakeycam filming: professional cameramen don't shake that much, even when running or moving. Hell, even my shitty attempts at filming aren't nearly as bad as some of the groan-inducing segments on BSG, partly because of the cameras themselves, which self-adjust continuously and are very forgiving of that kind of filming style.

If the segments still seem confusing to you, try to remember that the documentary segments almost always have the MNU timestamp and/or present the name and occupation of the person talking.
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Old August 16 2009, 04:31 PM   #66
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

DarKush wrote: View Post
I also had some issues with how blacks/Africans were portrayed. The Nigerians were depicted as savages and the few 'respectable' blacks-namely Wikus's chief assistant and the guard were clearly subordinates, with the guard even calling Wikus 'boss' all the time. That rankled me a bit. There were also scenes with blacks and aliens 'living' together or in proximity with each other in shanty towns, and it's never explained why is that, or why there were no whites living in those conditions. Except for the MNU representative and one clip of a female doctor, whites were clearly in charge in SA. Why is that? Apartheid, which was never addressed.
Umm...don't you think that is addressing apartheid? Or should they have someone say "apartheid" and wink at the screen just so you know they're referencing it?
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Old August 16 2009, 05:10 PM   #67
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

It's not a real movie criticism thread until people simultaneously complain about how the movie goes too far and doesn't go far enough. "Where's the Apartheid? Why are the black people always subordinate?"

T'Baio wrote: View Post
DarKush wrote: View Post
I also had some issues with how blacks/Africans were portrayed. The Nigerians were depicted as savages and the few 'respectable' blacks-namely Wikus's chief assistant and the guard were clearly subordinates, with the guard even calling Wikus 'boss' all the time. That rankled me a bit. There were also scenes with blacks and aliens 'living' together or in proximity with each other in shanty towns, and it's never explained why is that, or why there were no whites living in those conditions. Except for the MNU representative and one clip of a female doctor, whites were clearly in charge in SA. Why is that? Apartheid, which was never addressed.
Umm...don't you think that is addressing apartheid? Or should they have someone say "apartheid" and wink at the screen just so you know they're referencing it?
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Old August 16 2009, 06:53 PM   #68
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

JacksonArcher wrote: View Post
Peope should also consider that District 9 takes place in an alternate world where aliens appeared over South America twenty years ago. With that in mind, not everything can be related to actual events.
Precisely. The opening scenes in the movie are set in 1982. The actual movie, however, appears to be set in 2010 — at least according to the timestamps on the "documentary" portions of the film.

Any number of things could have changed WRT apartheid during that 28-year timeframe. After all, from 1982 onward, this *isn't* our timeline anymore ... it's a parallel reality to our own.

I enjoyed the movie very much. I do believe it's set up a sequel, though, in that "I'll return in three years" mojo it had going toward the end.

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Old August 16 2009, 07:01 PM   #69
davejames
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

USS Mariner wrote: View Post
Trekker4747 wrote: View Post

Much of the movie is filmed "Cloverfield"-style as if done with hand-held cameras as some of the premise is around a COPS-style documentary of the agents walking around thee slum to get the aliens to sign their relocation papers. If there's one "drawback" to the movie it's that these "documentary" scenes (with the actors talking to the camera) blend in seamlessly with the typical camera/"foruth wall POV" most movies use (as these scenes are also done with a hand-held camera style) so at times it can be confusing if we're watching the "documentary" or if we're watching "from our own prespective."
I was immensely impressed with the documentary filming sequences because cameramen aren't supposed to be shit at their job, which may be why you didn't see much difference between the "real-time" and documentary segments.

This is the main problem with most attempts at shakeycam filming: professional cameramen don't shake that much, even when running or moving. Hell, even my shitty attempts at filming aren't nearly as bad as some of the groan-inducing segments on BSG, partly because of the cameras themselves, which self-adjust continuously and are very forgiving of that kind of filming style.

If the segments still seem confusing to you, try to remember that the documentary segments almost always have the MNU timestamp and/or present the name and occupation of the person talking.
Yeah the shakycam does get a bit exaggerated at times, but it's mostly just done for effect.

I mean, I don't think we were meant to assume that there were LITERALLY people with video cameras documenting every intimate conversation in every room of the Galactica (and on the Cylon basestars for that matter). lol

It was just something done to make the scenes feel less stagnant and more "real," and I thought it was pretty effective.
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Old August 16 2009, 09:07 PM   #70
Trekker4747
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

It's entirely possible that apartheid never happened in this universe. I mean it is a totally different universe than our own so things are likely to be different.

Apartheid was being aluded to here it doesn't matter how/when/why it happened in this universe. It's irrelevant to the story becuase in this story the aliens are being treated as the blacks were in South Africa. That's what an alegory is. You remove the thing you want to talk about and insert something to make the story more interesting/engaging for audiences.

Where are the blacks in this alegory to apartheid? They're the ALIENS!
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Old August 16 2009, 10:00 PM   #71
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

Meh.

I liked it better the first time when it was called Alien Nation.

The trailer looked like a very preachy, big budget, Outer Limits episode. And the movie was basically just that. My god this movie was preachy. I don't mind messages in films. Far from it actually. But they just beat you over the head non-stop for two hours about how "RACISM IS TEH BAD!!", the most cliched thing to be preachy about. Well no fucking shit it's bad. Gene Roddenberry was able to tell us in 45 minutes what took you 2 hours to do. And he had hot alien strippers. The only way this director could lack subtlety any more then he already does is if he was on screen screaming at the audience "THIS IS SUPPOSED TO REPRESENT APARTHEID!!".

The way it would always shift between a real movie and a documentary was annoying. Make up your frickin' mind already.

Content wise, it's everything a NuBSG fan would love. All humans being evil(or as Ron Moore calls it "flawed") and doing evil things to the poor innocent aliens because humans are so evil in their evil ways because they're evil. Evil. Every human should have just had a big, black mustache they can twirl. That's how one-dimensional all the humans are. Ok, the main character isn't totally evil. He's a pussy as well. Eventually he takes the side of the Angels, but it's just to save his own ass and because the Alien DNA is making him good and pushing all the evil human DNA out.

I did like the action scenes. They were intense and ultra-violent and the shoot out at the end was fucking awesome. Too bad the movie couldn't have been just that.

If you're into those "humanity sucks" messages, you'll love this movie. Personally I'm a big fan of the species that invented The Reverse Cowgirl.
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Old August 16 2009, 11:03 PM   #72
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

loved the movie!

no wait- I fookin' loved the movie!



ok seriously great film, though I didnt really thinlk it was all that deep or complex (for one I agree that the military guys were pretty one dimensionally eeeevil) & at the end it just kinda became an all-out action sci-fi film, but a damn good one! Copley was fantastic, I really felt for him & just loved when he got into the mecha & started kicking ass!

so was that really Wikus at the end? poor dude.
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Old August 16 2009, 11:26 PM   #73
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

USS Mariner wrote: View Post
Dark Journey wrote: View Post
I just got back from it. In my opinion this is arguably one of the ten worst films I have ever seen. A completely formulaic story that once again recycles the evil corporation/military hunting some guy for a secret he possesses. The opening documentary style narrative goes on far too long and ends up having little to do with the film. The attempt to go back and for the from the documentary to the real action was handles amateurishly. This is also a film of convenience where things exist simply because they need to to advance the plot. The bad guys were bad simply because there needed to be bad guys. The kind of film where once you get out you have a million questions that are a variation on "well why did this happen"?
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Well I already knew that, but it doesn't change the fact that this movie sucks.
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Old August 16 2009, 11:57 PM   #74
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

I cant say whether it was a good movie or not, but I can't say I enjoyed it. Maybe it was a bit modern for my taste.

One thing I did like was Christopher's characterization. He was the most humane character in the movie.
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Old August 17 2009, 12:26 AM   #75
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Re: District 9 - Review, Discuss, Commentary ***SPOILERS*** possible

I'm very marveled, and full of humor, that last week's big-budget mega blockbuster of a movie, GI Joe, which cost 100+ million dollars to make had special effects you'd see in prime-time TV while this little movie, made on a fraction of the budget GI Joe had, has jaw-droppingly realistic looking SFX. The shots of the spaceship were so realistic looking you'd think they built a giant space ship out of foam and parked it over the city.
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