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-District 9 (R)

by Dr. D ~

Theater release: August 14, 2009 by Sony Pictures; Directed by: Neill Blomkamp; Cast: Sharlto Copley (Wikus Van De Merwe), Vanessa Haywood (Tania Van De Merwe)

image This is definitely not a movie for children, the violence is far too graphic. The movie starts out like a TV documentary exploring a refugee village where nearly 2 million aliens live—aliens as in from another planet. Unlike other Sci Fi scenarios, these aliens seem to be leaderless and powerless to take care of themselves even though their technology had to be advanced in order to reach Earth, they are now herded together in horrible apartheid conditions in Johannesburg, South Africa and treated like animals instead of the intelligent beings that they obviously must be.

The commentator and main character starts out making fun of the aliens calling them ‘Prawns’ (they do sort of look like crustaceans with two legs) while he shows the audience the despicable living conditions they live in while callously informing them that they’re all going to be evicted from Johannesburg and moved to a new more rural location.

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In the midst of the documentary, the commentator- Wikus Van De Merwe is sprayed by a black substance from an alien device and it triggers a metamorphosis. Soon Wikus is half human and half alien and becomes the first human who can actually use alien weapons and devices since all of the alien technology is bio based.

The story then turns into an action film as Wikus is on the run and being pursued by MNU forces of a multi-national conglomerate involved with trying to find ways to use alien weapons and technology.

Wikus links up with the alien leader who needs the black substance device back in order to power his space ship for a trip back to his home planet. He promises Wikus that he will reverse the metamorphosis and return him back into being fully human once more. Wikus ends up demonstrating alien weapons to his former friends as he holds off the entire MNU force while his alien friend make good on his escape from the ‘planet of the humans’.

I wish I could say that it was an enjoyable ride but it was thought provoking and definitely a different Sci Fi pic than your usual Star Wars or Trek film from the ‘future’ –this comes at you from the here and now and humanity is shown in the worst light possible until all the chips are down and played. Then one very unlikely human hero emerges and makes a difference.

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