District 9

17 08 2009

District 9 is a pretty interesting movie. It has a fresh approach and attitude towards the story and style, which makes it worth watching. One great thing about it is that the trailer doesn’t give it all away; actually if you’ve seen it you are probably expecting a different kind of movie than the one you are going to get. I’m not complaining, I was entertained. I went with a group of friends to watch it and I seem to be the only one who thought it was part comedy. The main character seems to come straight out of a Jim Carrey movie. He is almost like a modern version of Peter Sellers. The cast is all unknown and that made the movie a little more interesting cause we’re not sure about the ending. We are all a little more certain that Mel Gibson or George Clooney would end up winning the fight. With someone we never seem before it’s 50/50.

The director is constantly playing tricks on the audience with cliché moves, giving us hope and then quickly taking it away from us with the human characters irrational behaviors and the crazy action scenes. As well as adding a cute baby alien that we end up liking and constantly worrying about. The human characters are not the ones you would like to identify with. The main one, Wickus, is in charge to inform the aliens that they have been evicted from their shacks, collect their signatures (?) and relocate them back to their new home, which is pretty much a “concentration camp”. Of course that’s not how they explain to the aliens. Kinda like in WWII when the Jews were taken to Poland and the German government never said to them or to the German people that they were going to be taken as slaves to be tortured, analyzed and killed. Wickus has his hair combed to the side and he sports a mustache. Does that remind you of anyone? Maybe I’m reading into it too much.

The movie seems to be about how humans can’t seem to learn from past mistakes, like wars and segregations and constantly make the same mistakes over and over again when dealing with a “new” problem. In the end when facing a difficult and new situation we can screw things up pretty badly making very stupid and selfish choices (Iraq?). As everyone knows South Africa is one continent that has seen its share of racial fight, with apartheid. So it’s no coincidence that the movie is set there. Which makes me feel that the message that the writers and the director give is that they don’t seem to have much faith on how men can evolve and grow as times goes by and naturally end up relaying on an irrational behavior. Again, I’m not disputing that. I might be in the same boat as them. During the movie I felt that the tagline for it could have been “Humans suck!” The ones in this movie certainly do.

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