District 9, a movie filmed in a faux-documentary style, is one part South Africa apartheid history lesson and one part X-Files.
The movies offers explosions, thrills, gore, and tense humor, resulting in a crowd-pleaser and quite possibly, an Oscar winner.
The sci-fi film was directed by Peter Jackson's protégé, Neill Blomkamp. District 9 originated as a 2005 Blomkamp short film called Alive in Joburg.
Currently, the aggregate reviews for District 9 are pushing a 98/100 on RottenTomatoes.com – ranking it up there with The Godfather: Part II.
The story takes place 20 years after an extraterrestrial ship has stalled just outside of -- or rather, above -- Johannesburg, South Africa. Two decades later, the hapless aliens live in walled-off, brutally poor ghettos.
It's an ugly situation for everyone. The aliens, who look like skinny crustaceans and are called prawns by humans, live on offal and get high off cat food. The prawn/human relations in District 9 are obviously analogous to the black/white tension still felt in South Africa and around the world.
Here are what other movie reviews are saying about District 9:
This is one intense, intelligent, well-crafted action movie - one that dazzles the eye with seamless special effects but also makes you think without preaching. -AP
The entire project seems carried along by the scrappy energy of a bright, young filmmaker working far away from Hollywood's prying, homogenizing eyes. -The Village Voice
District 9 is the most exciting science fiction movie to come along in ages; definitely the most thrilling film of the summer; and quite possibly the best film I've seen all year. -The New York Observer
Watch the District 9 trailer below: