District 9 (2009) - Rotten Tomatoes

District 9 (2009)



Critic Consensus: Technically brilliant and emotionally wrenching, District 9 has action, imagination, and all the elements of a thoroughly entertaining science-fiction classic.

Movie Info

Director Neill Blomkamp teams with producer Peter Jackson for this tale of extraterrestrial refugees stuck in contemporary South Africa. It's been 28 years since the aliens made first contact, but there was never any attack from the skies, nor any profound technological revelation capable of advancing our society. Instead, the aliens were treated as refugees. They were the last of their kind, and in order to accommodate them, the government of South Africa set up a makeshift home in District 9 as politicians and world leaders debated how to handle the situation. As the humans begin to grow wary of the unwelcome intruders, a private company called Multi-National United (MNU) is assigned the task of controlling the aliens. But MNU is less interested in the aliens' welfare than attempting to understand how their weaponry works. Should they manage to make that breakthrough, they will receive tremendous profits to fund their research. Unfortunately, the highly advanced weaponry requires alien DNA in order to be activated. When MNU field operative Wikus van der Merwe (Sharlto Copley) is exposed to biotechnology that causes his DNA to mutate, the tensions between the aliens and the humans intensifies. Wikus is the key to unlocking the alien's technology, and he quickly becomes the most wanted man on the planet. Ostracized and isolated, Wikus retreats to District 9 in a desperate bid to shake his dogged pursuers. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovimore
Rating: R (for bloody violence and pervasive language)
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Art House & International, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By: Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 22, 2009
Box Office: $115.6M
Sony Pictures/Screen Gems - Official Site


Sharlto Copley
as Wikus Van de Merwe
David James
as Koobus Venter
Vanessa Haywood
as Tania Van de Merwe
Mandla Gaduka
as Fundiswa Mhlanga
Louis Minnaar
as Piet Smit
William Allen Young
as Dirk Michaels
Nathalie Boltt
as Sarah Livingstone - ...
Sylvaine Strike
as Dr. Katrina McKenzie
John Sumner
as Les Feldman - MIL En...
Greg Melvill-Smith
as Interviewer
Nick Blake
as Francois Moraneu - C...
Jed Brophy
as James Hope - Police ...
Marian Hooman
as Sandra Van de Merwe
Vittorio Leonardi
as Michael Bloemstein -...
Johan van Schoor
as Nicolas Van de Merwe
Stella Steenkamp
as Phyllis Sinderson - ...
Tim Irwin Gordon
as Clive Henderson - En...
Morne Erasmus
as MNU Medic
Anthony Bishop
as Paramedic
David Clatworthy
as MNU Doctor
Mike Huff
as MNU Doctor
Jonathan Taylor
as MNU Doctor
Jason Cope
as Christopher Johnson,...
Anthony Fridjhon
as MNU Executive
Siyabonga Radebe
as Obesandjo's Lieutena...
Melt Sieberhagen
as Anton Grobler
Andre Odendaal
as Mike Van Kerland
John Ellis
as MNU Medical Scientis...
Louise Saint Claire
as MNU Medical Scientis...
Alan Glauber
as MNU Operating Room D...
Nicolas Herbstein
as MNU Biolab Technicia...
Norman Antsey
as MNU Lead Medical Tec...
Norman Anstey
as MNU Lead Medical Tec...
Nick Boraine
as Craig Weldon
Robert Hobbs (II)
as Ross Pienaar
Mahendra Raghunath
as SABC Anchor Person
Sibulele Gcilitshana
as U GŁnters Woman
Phillip Mathebula
as Meat Stall Seller
David James
as Koobus Venter
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for District 9

Critic Reviews for District 9

All Critics (292) | Top Critics (47)

The wonder is that despite its obvious roots, District 9 feels staggeringly original.

Full Review… | June 17, 2015
Top Critic

It's a brashly confident debut, full of sharp, inventive detail (the prawns are crazy for cat food) and rooted in a couple of Big Ideas. Well worth the time, if not all of it.

Full Review… | August 25, 2014
Top Critic

Blomkamp is good at mustering speedy action and posting grisly sight gags in the background, carnage always hovering comically at the edge of your vision. But I'm not sure that District 9 entirely gets the earthling racism out of its own system.

Full Review… | June 17, 2015
Independent on Sunday

District 9 is almost wholly unique this year in combining fantastic action with thoughtful, narrative filmmaking.

Full Review… | June 17, 2015

One of the most original, breathtaking and downright electrifying movie experiences of 2009.

Full Review… | June 17, 2015
Herald Sun (Australia)

A gritty science-fiction film that features a population of humanoid crustacean-alien creatures [that] is far more grounded in reality than any of the current rom-coms currently unspooling in your neighbourhood multiplex.

Full Review… | June 17, 2015
Winnipeg Free Press

Audience Reviews for District 9

A gory sci fi smorgasbord with an amazing message.

John Manard

Super Reviewer


When a malfunctioning alien spaceship strands over a million of its inhabitants on Earth, they find an unlikely champion in the shape of a previously self serving weapons manufacturer exec who starts to metamorphose into one of them after exposure to an unknown chemical. District 9's plot takes a lot of cues from cult 80s sci-fi, most obviously the racism allegory of Alien Nation and the genetic mutation premise from Cronenberg's The Fly. However, unlike something like Doomsday which simply ripped off old films with no wit or subtlety, this film actually develops upon its ideas. The production design is fantastic and the action sequences extremely well done, particularly the brilliantly handled climactic battle and the film has a great deal of momentum that meant I enjoyed it more and more as it went on. But easily the strongest aspect of the film is Sharlto Copley's central performance who is quite brilliant as the selfish corporate bastard who unwillingly finds a cause to fight for. It would have been nice to learn more about what happened to the ship and the aliens in the first place and why these obviously technologically advanced creatures had degenerated into a bunch of filthy, scavenging animals but as a whole it is a hugely enjoyable piece of action sci-fi with an intelligent twist.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

Besides the clichťs, plot holes and the incoherent use of the camera, any allusion to Apartheid seems dishonest, since it is hard to believe that anyone could ever be tolerant if an alien spacecraft arrived on Earth carrying over a million of those repulsive giant lobsters uninvited.

Carlos Magalh„es

Super Reviewer

District 9 Quotes

Koobus Venter: Listen to me, you fuck! Get that fucking camera out of my face!
– Submitted by Cameron D (2 years ago)
Wikus van der Merwe: Fuck off! No, fuck off, man!
– Submitted by Prattay S (2 years ago)
Wikus van der Merwe: Hello, little guy! It's the sweetie man coming!
– Submitted by Nick S (2 years ago)
Wikus van der Merwe: Hey, you! Don't urinate on your fucking clothing!
– Submitted by Cameron D (2 years ago)

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