Movie Review – District 9

20 years ago, an alien mother-ship appeared above Johannesburg. In the proceeding years, the settlement camp named District 9 has become more of a detention camp and the population has grown. The power that be have decided to move the aliens to another, newer camp. This is what happens.

This is a movie without movie stars. There is no Hollywood in this movie. It feels like a documentary, aided by shaky cam and out of focus shots. It is pretty transparent that this is a  movie about apartheid and what we see is not nice. Derogatory comments, racial slurs and abuse are common on this aliens and it can be pretty offensive.

The main character of District 9 is Sharlto Copley, a newcomer to acting who starts out like the majority of the humans we see in the movie. Soon it is apparent that things are affecting him as he goes about his business evicting aliens.

For a movie that is pretty grim at times, there is humour which at times is needed to keep the movie from becoming too dark.  Its a fine balance that is achieved by the mixture of heavy and light.

As a movie produced by the bearded one, Peter Jackson, the effects, of course done by WETA, are outstanding and their work helps give the aliens, for lack of a better word, humanity.

The movie uses a mixture of English, Nyanja and the alien language consisting of clicks so there are a lot of sub-titles but nothing distracting from the story telling.

District 9 is a very good science fiction movie, no big space battles as Hollywood would have made, and in many ways a personal tale within a bigger story, and its a better movie for it.

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