9 gets seven points for its visuals, and zero points for everything else.
I do not regret buying the ticket. It is well worth eight dollars simply to look at how beautiful the art is. Even though I've seen the whole "post-apocalyptic" environment before, 9's world has its own personality and uniqueness that fits perfectly with the characters and music. Watching the tiny, carefully-crafted characters move around in what's left of the dead world never gets dull.
Unfortunately, every other part of the movie does. I hate to say it, but the plot and stereotypical characters drag the film along through the dirt rather than elevate it. The plot is worthy only of a straight-to-tv Disney movie. Honestly, stop me if you've heard this one before: older, authority-type figure sets strict rules for his family/colony/whatever for "the good of the ___" or "to keep us safe." Teenage youth says rules are unfair, disobeys them, and through a few twists and turns, the older obvious metaphor for conservatism learns the error of his ways and everyone is happy. Seriously. The plot is that predictable and tired, which is very odd considering the visuals are anything but. It's just really odd to have such a dull story in such an interesting world.
Thematically, the plot is just as upbeat, which again, is strange because it doesn't seem to fit the landscape at all. The blind pursuit of technology will destroy us all. Yes, thank you, Mr. Director, I've known that since 1968's 2001: A Space Odyssey. And those Terminator movies. And the Matrix. And come to think of it, just about every movie involving a computer or machines...weird. Anyway, you see, after our technology inevitably turns against us (WE SHOULD HAVE LISTENED!!), we can only hope to survive if we all cooperate, throw away dogma and conservatism, and give chicks weapons. A fine idea, but it's not very interesting to watch on screen.
The characters do occasionally say interesting things, and the plot isn't always yawn-inducing, but set against the world around it, it seems a lot worse than it is.
But go see it. It's an intertaining movie, and it's worth watching just so you can imagine what will come next in the world of animation.