‘Prawns’ that’s what they’ve been stereotyped as since 1982. Lord of The Rings Director, Peter Jackson works with Director Neill Blomkamp to produce this exhilarating sci- fi thriller. When a mother ship, bearing most of its extra terrestrial population appears immobile over Johannesburg, South Africa, the human race is forced to take drastic measures. ‘District 9’ is built. Holding the aliens as refugees they are welcomed to Earth and forced to live among us. 28 years later, newly promoted Wikus Van De Merwe (Shartlo Copley) appointed by father in law Piet Smit (Louis Minnar) Head of Multi National United (MNU) is given the task to evict the residents of District 9 and relocate them to the newly established District 10, where he meets the local resident from another planet, Christopher Johnson (Jason Cope).
The success in this film comes from the well written script that captures the friendship and emotion brought together by the contrasting characters of the two different races. Just married, things are looking good for Wikus, but a turn of events occurs when he is exposed to the alien’s biotechnology, transforming his physical appearance. Now on the most wanted list, having been accused of having a sexual relationship with one of them, and wanted by the Nigerians, who need him to operate the alien weaponry, he seeks the help of his two new ‘Prawn’ friends Christopher Johnson and his son. They strike a deal, the biochemical’s for his normal life back, and venture deep into the facilities of MNU, once enemies now a team, to take back what was taken as evidence, in order for Christopher Johnson and his son to return home.
An action packed District 9 is a must watch film. First and foremost it is a very entertaining film, alongside with its interesting storyline focussing on the relationship with between the two races; the production side of the film is spectacular! Producing multiple camera techniques using high tech handheld cameras like the RED One to form, classic first person shooter shots when handling weaponry, and many over head bird’s eyes views perfect for capturing news footage, which is certainly difficult to produce. With many perfect shots, including a still filming used for interviewing, it enabled great editing to create a documentary style format following the events of Wikus flicking to and fro between live action of the storyline and the documentary on him.
Just as good as the camera work, the special effects used was phenomenal. Throughout District 9, the prosthetic make up worn by Copley on Wikus’s transformation, are very detailed, and are definitely not meant for viewing whilst eating. There is plenty of blood and gore spread throughout during action scenes, enough to make you go “whoa!” Through the use of CGI, an anthropomorphic like alien, completely different to those used in other sci-fi thrillers such as Alien, was created so that the audience are able relate to the aliens and truly emphasize with them when derogative actions are constantly thrown towards them.
The story, complete with its special effects and production skills is not one for the weak minded. But if you want plenty of action, twists, and your mind blown away, then this is certainly the right film to watch. I highly recommend it and give it a 10/10 as it holds the key ingredients needed in a sci-fi thriller film for complete entertainment.