Saturday, August 22, 2009

District 9

I saw the oustanding sci fi film District 9 today. Tremendous movie. It is a solidly paced, well acted story of aliens putt putting here on Earth as their ship malfunctions. It does so over South Africa, and with a history of apartheid, who better than to treat aliens like shit than South Africans. It's a creative way to tell an alien first contact story with an attempt at realism.

1. Had this movie come out in 1985, it would have been one of the greatest political-social commentaries ever about a current system. Coming out now, we get a story that shows the horrendous features of apartheid. Side note: it's interesting how the black South Africans who suffered under apartheid are portrayed as quick to shove the same horrible system onto another group.
2. CGI was excellent. Looked good, looked real, and didn't have many "oh that's so fake" moments. It was used well too instead of forever on display like a George Lucas movie.
3. Alien design was great. I also enjoyed how the aliens talked a bit like some of the Star Wars random aliens.
4. Solid acting by the lead as a pencil pusher suddenly pushed into a crazy situation and desperately trying to get his life back in order. There's genuine character development with his story arc.
5. The pacing is good as not every scene is a shoot out scene. We get some sad, intimate moments. You get juiced up then some time to relax. You also care about characters.
6. I laughed at the name of the evil corporation: MNU, Multinational United. Way to let us know it is evil.
7. Budget was $30 mil. It has earned $60 mil so far in the US. This thing will crack $100 mil in the US box office alone. I smell sequel.
8. Great blend of news type camera work, film camera work and that COPS camera look. Of course, we can thank "Blair Witch Project" for this.
9. It's an intense movie. Not like "28 Days Later" where you want to shake after a while, but it has a build up and steady level of intensity.
10. The kid alien. Seriously, supah cute.

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