District 9 (2-Disc Special Edition)

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Product Overview

An extraterrestrial race forced to live in slum-like conditions on earth suddenly finds a kindred spirit in a government agent who is exposed to their biotechnology.

Specifications

Studio Sony
SKU 212627183
UPC 043396332348
UPC 14 00043396332348
Format DVD
Release Date 1/17/2012
Rating Rating
Actors
Name Copley,Sharlto
Link Search Link
Reviews
ReviewSource ReelViews
Review It is universally acknowledged (at least by those who don't play with Transformers toys) that the best science fiction stories are those that use the devices of aliens, robots, and space ships to illustrate some greater truth. Star Trek (the TV series in its various incarnations and, to a lesser degree, the movies) understood this, and that's one reason it has become revered in some circles despite frequent lapses into dubious science. District 9, the eye-opening feature debut from South African filmmaker Neill Blomkamp, recognizes this as well and, in order to avoid the possibility of his message being overlooked, he abandons subtlety. Anyone who watches District 9 and doesn't think of Apartheid, Nazis, and Josef Mengele needs to spend some time reading a few history books...District 9 expands upon the ideas explored in Blomkamp's 2005 short, Alive in Joburg (which one assumes will be included on the DVD). Peter Jackson produced the movie, adding an internationally revered name to the credits that will doubtless help in marketing. (Jackson had originally intended for Blomkamp to direct the movie adaptation of Halo, but when that deal fell apart, District 9 became Plan B.) However, although Jackson's moniker may help to get warm bodies into theater seats, the Lord of the Rings director is not needed to keep them there. Nor is the lack of an established actor (Sharlto Copley, the lead, and only human with significant screen time, acquits himself admirably, but is an unkown) a drawback. District 9 speaks with a loud, clear voice and by defying as many science fiction conventions as it embraces, it becomes a singular movie-going experience. For fans of the genre, the summer of 2009 truly has been the best of times and the worst of times. Sure, there have been the likes of Transformers 2 and G.I. Joe, but this has also been the season of Moon and now District 9...District 9 ends in a way that is both satisfying and unsettling. Although the story is told, there are untilled ground and unanswered questions - not the least of which is what will happen in three years. A sequel, if one is warranted, is effectively set up, but is not mandatory. The strongest afterimage left by the film is the one provided by gazing through the dark lens of District 9 at human nature. I, for one, hope the inhabitants of Earth never encounter visitors from another planet because the reality of how we might interact with them could be close to what is depicted here, and that's a depressing thought.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer James Berardinelli
ReviewRating 9
ReviewSource Chicago Sun-Times
Review I suppose there's no reason the first alien race to reach the Earth shouldn't look like what the cat threw up. After all, they love to eat cat food. The alien beings in District 9, nicknamed "prawns" because they look like a cross between lobsters and grasshoppers, arrive in a space ship that hovers over Johannesburg. Found inside, huddled together and starving to death, are the aliens, who benefit from a humanitarian impulse to relocate them to a location on the ground...Who are these aliens? Where did they come from? How did their ship apparently run out of power (except what's necessary to levitate its massive tonnage?). No one asks: They're here, we don't like them, get them out of town. There doesn't seem to be a lot to like. In appearance, they're loathsome, in behavior disgusting and evoke so little sympathy that killing one is like -- why, like dropping a 7-foot lobster into boiling water...The film's South African setting brings up inescapable parallels with its now-defunct apartheid system of racial segregation. Many of them are obvious, such as the action to move a race out of the city and to a remote location. Others will be more pointed in South Africa. The title District 9 evokes Cape Town's historic District 6, where Cape Coloureds (as they were called then) owned homes and businesses for many years before being bulldozed out and relocated. The hero's name, van der Merwe, is not only a common name for Afrikaners, the white South Africans of Dutch descent, but also the name of the protagonist of van der Merwe jokes, of which the point is that the hero is stupid. Nor would it escape a South African ear that the alien language incorporates clicking sounds, just as Bantu, the language of a large group of African apartheid targets...I'll be interested to see if general audiences go for these aliens. I said they're loathsome and disgusting, and I don't think that's just me. The movie mentions Nigerian prostitutes servicing the aliens, but wisely refrains from entertaining us with this spectacle.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer Roger Ebert
ReviewRating 8
Features
DVD, Widescreen, Aspect Ratio 1.85:1, Dolby Digital (5.1), Dolby Surround Sound
Product Attributes
Video Format DVD
Quotes
Betsy Sharkey, 100Los Angeles Times ...it's a blast.
Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly Madly original, cheekily political, altogether exciting District 9.
Matthew Sorrento, Film Threat ...one of the best of the summer, and undoubtedly the most inventive from the multiplex this year.

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