District 9 Review

While spending wondrous time with one of my closest friends the other day, the topic of segregation came up in thought. We spoke of several movies that sent the right message and seemed to hit very close to home and the movie District 9 came up.

For the most part, everyone I had talked to about the movie had said good things. So I was surprised when she told me that she didn’t like it, and had actually gotten into arguments over the movie. Apparently she finds the message one better told in other movies, over told, and obvious. Sure, if you were to keep people in segregation long enough against their will they are bound to fight back, come together to get the upper hand and overturn the ways in which their lives are being run. It’s basic knowledge.

I had yet to watch the movie so I had no stand on the matter, but she pleaded with me to watch the movie so that she would know how I felt about it.

So basically at the start of the movie they explain the whole situation. An alien ship is stuck immobile over the city of Johannesburg, South Africa. What first started as assistance to the aliens who have become malnourished and unhealthy cooped up in their ship for so long unable to leave, turned hostile while the military worked hard to keep them segregated from the humans, fencing them into a ghetto referred to as District 9.

All people are the same, as our animal instincts are the same. If we are kept separated from something, we see something such as aliens being kept from us behind fences, a fear builds up. We automatically fear what we do not know, what we are ignorant to because we are unaware of it’s capabilities. So naturally having the aliens kept from civilization as they were, fenced in with military guns and soldiers surrounding them the people of Johannesburg, South Africa became antsy of the whole situation and wanted nothing more then the aliens to be removed and sent back to where they came from.

In the beginning of the movie they just keep showing all this crime that the aliens are committing. Stealing, derailing trains, setting vehicles aflame, and it’s common knowledge to anyone watching the movie that it is the human’s fault that all this is taking place. Instead of educating them to our ways and telling them how we live as people they kept them ignorant and then they see them punishable for the crimes we commit, when to them they are not considered as crimes at all. Had this actually taken place, I have no doubt it would have happened the same way. It only takes one person to instil fear into the minds of many, to implant an idea such as segregating the aliens…

While in the process of evicted the aliens to a second location the main character Wikus van der Merwe who was previously taking such pleasure in evicting the aliens and finding their weapons becomes infected by an alien fluid that begins to transform him into the aliens which now occupy District 9. With little choice he must then assist two aliens so that he can in turn save himself before the transformation becomes complete.

For Wikus, it becomes a battle between self preservation and common human decency. After getting a taste for the treatment of these aliens, he comes to see just how wrong it all is, and decides that helping them get home and back to where it is all right and just for them is more important then his returning to his normal state. It’s an exciting showdown as he tries to buy time for them to return to the ship, fighting off the very brigade he had earlier been a part of.

The movie ends with the Alien Mothership leaving as Wikus watches with a relieved expression on his face. More testimonials from the friends and family of Wikus and then stopping short at footage of the wife, who had previously spoke to us about his home made gifts to her and how she treasured something made from the heart. Speculation about whether the gift could possibly be from him and then a shot of one of the aliens fashioning a very similar gift out of rubbish, clearly trying to hint at it being him.

Ok, so i am sorry to my very good friend, but I found the movie to be wonderful. I do get that many others have displayed segregation on many different fronts, but it is refreshingly new to have it being applied to Aliens held captive while stranded here. It shows just how fascist every government is, and how they will go to great lengths, shucking all morals out the window so they can grow and prosper. The sad fact of the matter is that the government does see evolution not as human growth but as the weapons we acquire.

It’s a good movie and it leaves room for the sequel District 10 which i hear is in the process of being made.

Sorry love, but all in all it was a good movie!


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