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District 9

District 9 is an Earth based science fiction which was released in 2009 and is directed by Neill Blomkamp.

Whilst Microsoft and the film studios slug it out over a deal to make Halo the movie, Peter Jackson who was to be involved in this film, went and made this film. It is one of the few science fiction films that has a Hollywood distributor that is not set in America. The film is a remake, not of an old film but of a short story called `Alive in Joburg`. That story features aliens arriving in South African and being put up in Johannesburg. The aliens have escaped imprisonment from their capturers and have sought sanctuary on Earth. It is reminiscent of the eighties film, Alien Nation. Escaped slaved aliens landing and seeking sanctuary. Whereas in the Alien Nation series of film and television, the District aliens are not intergrated into the community. The aliens are forced to live in poor accomodation and do not have the same standard of living as people would expect. The video shows them trying to survive and how some people view them.

District 9 is a big budget remake of the original film. It is set in todays world not during the apartheid years that the original film is set in. The aliens arrive but there is no contact for many years until the government decide to break into the spaceship. Inside ill aliens are found. They are housed in an area of Johannesburg known as District 9 where they are left to fend for themselves. District 9 is a real district of the city where the storyline is set. An organisation known as the MultiNational Unit (MNU) is tasked with looking over them. The Government decide to move the inhabitents to a new District 10 where there is better amenities to care for them. The main character is Wikus Van De Merwe who is an enforcement officer with the MNU. Wikus is played by Sharlto Copley who produced the original Joburg story. He goes to serve eviction papers on an alien called Christopher and during the ensuing events gets infected by a poison. Over a short space of time, Wikus arm starts transforming and he is able to use alien technology. The MNU see him as a threat and want to remove his arm. Not one to lay down and let them, he escapes. Wikus turns to the Christopher for help but he will will only do so on a couple of conditions agree. On the run, they break into the MNU HQ to look for answers. In the ensuing battle, they escape in a craft but they are shot down. They make it to the mothership where they are attacked and Wikus is killed. Christopher manages to take control of the ship and pilot it out of the atmosphere. The film then has interviews with people who theorize what is to happen next.

The film highlights South Africa`s treatment of black people during the Apartheid regime. The aliens are detested in the same way that some white people saw the black people. The moving of people from 9 to 10 is inspired by the Apartheid governments attempts to move people out from District 6 to another district so that District 6 would be a whites only area.

Cast Members

Wikus Van De Merwe ( Sharlto Copley )



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