Film: District 9

Well, yesterday afternoon I finally got around to seeing the surprise hit of the summer movie season, Distict 9. The film is an imaginative story of over one million reptile like alien beings trapped on present day earth after their massive ship became disabled above Johannesburg, South Africa in 1980. They are herded into a slum in Johannesburg called District 9. The film explores the challenges the aliens face co-existing with humans and follows the efforts made by the human authorities to relocate the aliens over a hundred miles outside Joburg.

I thought D-9 was a very good sci fi, but I can’t place it among the all-time great sci fi’s. On a numerical scale I would have to give it a 7 out of 10. Perhaps after several more viewings I will ultimately give it a higher rating, but that is how a see D-9 right now. I’ve been an avid fan of sci fi for over 30 years so I’ve seen quite a few great sci fi films and I’m holding D-9 to a high standard. That said, I think D-9 is a truly remarkable effort as a first film for director Neill Blomkamp.

In an interview that Blomkamp gave at Comic Con he said he wanted D-9 to reflect the look of non glossy, hard edged 1980’s films. It is clear to me that Blomkamp must be a fan of the work of Ridley Scott and Paul Verhoeven. You can definitely see the influence of films such as Blade Runner, Robocop, Starship Troopers and Blackhawk Down on D-9.

This film has an ending that definitely sets it up for a sequel. Given the huge box office success that D-9 is enjoying it would seem that the a sequel is very likely. If a sequel is made Blomkamp will no doubt be given a budget that is much larger than the $30 million he had to make D-9. It will very interesting to see if Blomkamp can equal or surpass his impressive debut.

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