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MOVIE REVIEW: District 9

Tomorrow a movie opens that I'm guessing will be one of the biggest success stories of the year.

It was a "little" science fiction picture that for some reason, got a lot of buzz going for it.

District 9 has been talked about for months, and now it's finally here.

If you thought E.T. was cute, well…these guys look more like the aliens from Alien, but a little more cockroachy. Oh, and they love cat food.

The movie is made in the Cloverfield/Blair Witch vein - shaky cameras sometimes, and documentary style, as if the military is recording their activities.

I found it odd when I saw the review by Roger Ebert, and his big beef is that the ship that broke down and has hung over Johannesburg, South Africa, doesn't seem to be forced to the ground by gravity. Well, I'm dying to know of Ebert had that same complaint when he saw Superman, flying around with merely a red cape and blue tights, as if they're made of material that somehow allows him to leap over tall buildings.

The aliens ("prawns" as they're called in this film) are told they have to move from the place they live, into a ghetto (how can you not think of apartheid as you watch this storyline unfold?)

The movie is narrated by a hapless military guy, who has his heart in the right place. Instead of showing up and angrily telling the aliens to hit the road, he offers them cat food and tries to make the best of a bad situation.

That actor is played by Sharlto Copley, someone I know nothing about (he reminds me of a character from Flight of the Conchords).

The movie drops the ball a few times. For example, these weapons and chemicals the military wants to use so bad…I'm not sure why the aliens don't just use them against the humans, and say "We'll stay right where we are, thank you very much."

The movie starts out as a sort of E.T., but quickly turns Fly on ya. And, with the (relatively) small budget of $30 million, the special effects are all a lot of fun. Overall, I enjoyed this film more than I thought I would. And the ending is spectacular.

I'm giving it a B.