Sharlto Copley, Jason Cope, John Sumner, South African science fiction

District 9 (2008, South Africa)

2008South Africa

Categories: alien artifactsalien speciesalternate historyextraterrestrial life2000s sci-fi

District 9  2008 sci-fi movie

Running time: 110 minutes

Language: English

In 1982 large alien spaceship arrives to Earth and hovers over Johannesburg in South Africa. The government is puzzled since the aliens did not leave their spaceship not tried to make any contact. When special forces finally entered the spaceship they have found tousands of malnourished aliens. Since they looked like insects people started to derogatorily call them as prawns and the government set up a camp called District 9 as place where they will live on Earth. But 28 years later the situation has changed - the population of prawns have significantly increased, District 9 was overpopulated, violence, illegal weapons and other crimes have became a major problem.

The government decided to relocate the aliens to much larger camp outside the Johannesburg and hired the private company to force the prawns to move. Wikus van de Merwe, a mediocre bureaucrat, is put in charge of the operation. But during the search of one of the huts he finds a small container filled with black liquid. Accidentally he sprays part of it on his face and something strange begins to happen to him - his DNA is mixed with the alien one. Soon he will learn the surprising facts behind the operation...

Independent science fiction movie based on a short film Alive in Joburg by Neill Blomkamp. On many levels it is allegory of racial segregation and xenophobia during the apartheid era in South Africa - the plot was inspired by the 1966 events when 60,000 black inhabitants of Johannesburg District 6 were forcibly relocated to a new place so the area would be kept for white people.

Despite being independent movie with rather modest budget (about 30 million USD) District 9 offers rather unknown cast, original script and high quality special effects. The only flaw of the project is the plot itself - although original it is somehow chaotic in some parts, the pace is not impressive, characters rather simple, the message behind the story hard to understand.

Overall it was interesting project, with fresh approach to sci fi themes, but it lacked in quality of the plot.

Our rating

5.2 / 10

Overall rating

6 / 10

Reality complexity

2 / 5


3 / 5

Story complexity

2 / 5

Full District 9

 District 9 District 9 District 9

Creators of District 9

Neill Blomkamp films


Neill Blomkamp films


Terri Tatchell films


Cast of District 9

Sharlto Copley films
as Wikus Van De Merwe

Jason Cope films
as Grey Bradnam

John Sumner films
as Les Feldman

Vanessa Haywood films
as Tania Van De Merwe

Anthony Fridjhon films
as MNU Executive

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