A movie that cleverly hides the absence of any plot by distracting you with the absence of any theme, and then setting it in South Africa, as seen through the eyes of a child. Take out the CGI, and you have a short story by Roger Hargreaves.
Critics' reviews of this maddeningly ordinary video game sequel have been overwhelmingly positive; not "fucking-A!" positive but "scathing social satire" and "indictment of man's inhumanity to man" positive, which likely suggests critics did not actually play the game.
However, multiple viewings support the speculation that this movie will win several Academy Awards, including Best Picture. (NB: it is not necessay to see the movie repeatedly in the theatre; fortunately, the major studios have joined together and created a website called "The Pirate Bay" which allows you to watch a movie for free before you decide if you want to buy it from iTunes for 99 cents.)
A complete interpretation of the movie requires a contextual/linguisitic deconstruction, and weed.
The aliens, who in the movie like to eat cat food, represent blacks, who do not generally like cat food. These aliens are descended from the original Predator alien, a Rastafarian originally named Snoop Dogg, originally played by action star Jean-Claude Van Damme, who, of course, is originally from South Africa. He quit the movie because the mask was too heavy, and the role went to a black guy named Bigfoot who then died of AIDS.1
The South Africans find that the aliens' weapons can only be used by those with alien DNA; but they also quickly discover that their own DNA makes them hate black people, in this case aliens. So they herd them into a ghetto and fence it off. The writers of the movie cleverly mask this devastating critique of the Bush Administration by naming the ghetto "Gaza."
The name "District 9" is an allusion to the 9th district of New Orleans submerged by the movie Hurricane Katrina almost exactly 4 years ago; for this reason the aliens in the movie are referred to as "prawns." As everyone knows, prawns are delicious; this is why some of the black people in the movie try to eat them. This entire subtext is a blistering critique of the Bush Administration who, as early as 2001, had advocated for eating Katrina victims. As the President of the Academy of Motion Pictures once said, "George Bush hates black people. Especially delicious Iraqis."
The aliens are largely forgotten and ignored in the slum, despite their being, well, aliens, a fact one could be forgiven for assuming would prompt some curiosity. Not in South Africa. Blacks there are rarely considered curiosities. The only reason the South Africans begin worrying about them after 20 years is that the aliens start having sex with their women. Amazingly, that part isn't a joke.
The majority of the movie shows the greedy South Africans, played by America, who try to evict all of the Districts out of their ghetto in order to build a Disneyland, as seen through the eyes of a child. This bit of eviction nastiness falls to Wikus van der Merwe, played by Blackwater USA (Nominated, Best Supporting Actor ), who is so craven and petty that at one point he turns into a giant robot. This transformation is a scathing critique of the Bush Administration, who hate robots. District 8 and 9 have no choice but to turn to the underworld, the "black" market, for the parts they need to build their spaceship. Because there are absolutely no such criminal gangs anywhere in South Africa, the Districts must travel all the way to Nigeria to find thugs willing to sell them the parts.
All the while, they are relentlessly pursued by Wikus and the Fox News team, who shoot and kill everything in sight just to feel the blood splatter on their faces. It nourishes them. They also want to get access to the aliens' weapons, which are infinitely more powerful than human weapons and which are laying around discarded everywhere in Johannesburg. The Districts themselves never use the weapons that they brought with them from space on their human pursuers, because they are a peaceful race, abhor war, and just want to return to their homeland. They do, however, throw rocks at them as they're being shot at by machine guns. Also, one dons a suicide vest and blows himself up in order to kill all the vampires. (This may not have happened in this movie, but rather on CNN, but it could have happened in this movie, too. And as anyone with enough weed will tell you, umm... what? Either way, I think we all know what it says about the Bush Administration.)
In this movie, not only do many humans die-- which prompted one not at all young but in all likelihood retarded moviegoer who had stumbled in from a next door Mrs. Field's Cookies to agree, "blast those motherfuckers!"-- not only are all humans depicted as corrupt Halliburton employees deserving of and receiving of death, but there is only one human in the whole movie who displays any goodness or nobility-- but he does so only after he becomes an alien. Think about this. I wish that there was a joke in there somewhere, but there isn't.
1 Surprisingly very little of this is not true.