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*** Official 9 Discussion Thread


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#1 of 12 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted September 12 2009 - 11:15 AM

EDIT: This post originated as a response to DaveF's, before our posts were separated into the Official Review and Discussion threads. Dave's full review can now be found in the Official Review thread.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveF 

If, in the opening minutes, our freshly awakened hero, 9, had done the obvious thing -- the thing he's just about to do until distracted by something shiny -- the story would be resolved immediately and there would be no movie.
 
I just saw the film, Dave, and I have no idea what you're referring to. Could you be more specific, maybe in a spoiler box?


Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveF 

Instead, the movie writers willfully force the characters to avoid doing the obviously sensible things to drag out the story.
What other examples did you see in the film? Considering that there is a schism within the survivor society over how to live in the aftermath of the great disaster, I'm not sure how one can say that characters are avoiding doing the "sensible thing". What appears "sensible" to an outsider may be unthinkable (or taboo) to someone in a different culture, and part of the point of 9 is that these creatures arrive in the world with no bearings and no pre-existing society that can orient them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveF 

If, in the opening minutes, our freshly awakened hero, 9, had done the obvious thing -- the thing he's just about to do until distracted by something shiny -- the story would be resolved immediately and there would be no movie. Instead, the movie writers willfully force the characters to avoid doing the obviously sensible things to drag out the story. And despite the artificial stretching of the story, the movie still only ekes out 80 minutes. And at the end, 9 finally gets around to doing what he should have done at first, the thing that he was told multiple times to do by another ragdoll, and the movie ends. And with that ending, it still makes no sense.

 
Yes, it takes the entire film for 9 to do what 2 told him, because, from about the moment that 2 tells him, circumstances render it impossible for 9 to do it. And what about the ending "makes no sense"?

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#2 of 12 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted September 12 2009 - 11:34 AM


The obvious thing to do was, at the moment of "birth", to examine the room you're in. To understand who you are, where you are, and where you came from. Even distracted by shiny things in the distance, the immediate need to know where you are is paramount.

Then, when 2 took the device from 9, he should have immediately given it back to 9 when he sent 9 to safety. Don't keep the critical mystical device with the guy defending against the giant monster.

From then, at any point, the obvious thing was to go back to the origin room, to understand and get context.

Even when others had been captured, the right thing to do was to return to the origin to understand, before running off into unknown danger.

Gotta go. Will comment more later.

Not a lousy film, but thoroughly mediocre, except for some visual brilliance.


#3 of 12 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted September 12 2009 - 12:01 PM

That's what I suspected the answer would be. Save your energy, because we're not going to agree. You seem to think it's reasonable to expect sophisticated and deliberated behavior from a creature without parents or society who is just a few minutes past the moment of birth (your phrase). I don't think that makes any sense. Indeed, I find the whole set of standards you're applying to these characters to be a bizarre and ultimately reductionist exercise. One might as well say, "If only Adam and Eve hadn't eaten the apple, everything would have been fine." It's a true statement, but it misses the point entirely.

9 is a character who awakens in an unfamiliar world with no self-knowledge or understanding. He doesn't even know that there's anyone like him until he encounters 2. A major portion of the story is 9 learning about the world in which he finds himself and about various ways that one may choose to live in it. One can infer that 1 through 8 underwent a similar process, and the choices they made are a big part of what informs 9's "education".

I rate the film much more highly. The themes are universal, and the execution is first-rate. No, it's not Pixar, but with Burton and Bekmambetov as producers, I wouldn't expect it to be.


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#4 of 12 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted September 12 2009 - 02:58 PM

This thread is now designated the Official Discussion Thread for "9". Please, post all comments, links to outside reviews, film and box office discussion items to this thread.

All HTF member film reviews of "9" should be posted to the
Official Review Thread.

Thank you for your consideration in this matter.


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#5 of 12 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted September 12 2009 - 04:19 PM

I saw nothing to indicate that nothing different in the characters's behavior should be expected. They were depicted as human, not alien. So normal human behaviors were to be expected.

And the scientist apparently intended and designed 9 to act as I expected. 9 Was the final, best, and Explorer. The information was left for him.

That aside, I  thought the characters were dull. They were crafted like a multi-player video game (or a typical action movie). There was the Old Leader, Strong Man, Healer, Scholar, Tinkerer, Fighter, and the Explorer. And Pointlessly Evil Villain. Each had exactly one role and no emotional resonance.

And I couldn't make sense of the end, which is perhaps is my issue. If the absense of souls made the Brain evil, then integrating the souls into it should make it good. I thought the resolution would be to have all the ragdolls sacrifice themselves to the Brain knowing it would then integrate the shards of the Scientist's soul and make the Brain good. Instead, they removed the souls so they could float up into the raindrops??? And so destroying some of the ragdolls was intended so the world could be reborn? But not all of them??? Or none of that should have happened if 9 had simply taken a moment to Explore, as designed?

So, I didn't hate this movie. But I was disappointed by it. I felt like I was watching a videogame movie for tweens.


#6 of 12 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted September 13 2009 - 02:03 AM

I never said these were "alien" creatures. They're human creations, which means that they share certain recognizable human traits. But they're also missing most of the life experience and social context that allows each of us to function. In that sense, they're analogous to Blade Runner's replicants, except that the visual cues are more obvious. (How many "people" have you met with burlap skin, a zipper from neck to groin and headlights for eyes?) And like those other human creations, they have a very short time in which to learn who they are, understand their relation to their creators, and figure out their place in the world. Some of them are better at it than others.

I'm afraid I don't have time to expand on the rest of the story, as I'm spending today on my next disc review. Besides, as I said at the outset, we're not going to agree.
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#7 of 12 OFFLINE   Patrick Sun

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Posted September 13 2009 - 12:13 PM

Here's the original 10 minute short.  They padded it out to 79 minutes in the film version.

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1jl41_9-nine-shane-acker-short-animation_creation

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#8 of 12 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted September 13 2009 - 12:33 PM

Well if you have time, I'd like to hear another interpretation of the ending. I simply didn't get it.

The Scientist created a device to transfer souls (or pieces thereof). He made it fit the Brain. But it wasn't supposed to be used with the Brain. And so he explained how to reverse it against the Brain.

Why make it even fit the Brain in the first place? Why leave it out for 9 to find in the first place? If 9 found it, then the Brain couldn't have it, but there is the risk that the Brain would then get it, and then it would have to be reversed, etc.

Why didn't he simply destroy it after the creation of the last Ragdoll so the Brain would never get it, never be reborn, never cause any trouble?

Allowing for 9 to not do obvious things on boot-up, the Scientist could have done obvious things to save his creations significant trouble.


#9 of 12 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted September 13 2009 - 03:22 PM

The short is amazing. Full of wonder, anxiety, surprise, dread. And an intriguing ending. The aspect of the soul-conveyance device having two parts was key, and was critically removed from the movie. That brings a lot of sense to the entire concept, for me.


#10 of 12 OFFLINE   JonZ

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Posted September 13 2009 - 06:12 PM

You know, Im one who usually picks films apart that I see - which is why I hated Star Trek so much.

But I really kind of turned my brain off for this film.Ill have to see it again some time in the future and pay closer attention.

I thought it was ok, but LOVED the design work they did for it.


#11 of 12 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted September 14 2009 - 06:13 AM

Visually, it was gorgeous at times. I loved the retro parallel-universe technology depicted for the apocalypse.


#12 of 12 OFFLINE   Jeff Cooper

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Posted May 13 2011 - 08:30 AM

This is an ancient thread, but I just watched this for the first time and can answer at least a couple of Dave's questions:


That aside, I  thought the characters were dull. They were crafted like a multi-player video game (or a typical action movie). There was the Old Leader, Strong Man, Healer, Scholar, Tinkerer, Fighter, and the Explorer. And Pointlessly Evil Villain. Each had exactly one role and no emotional resonance.


The scientist explains in his video, that each 'number' was a part of his soul.  So it seems that each time he used his device, a different aspect of his soul was transferred into the creature:  fear, wisdom, courage, inquisitiveness, etc.  Thus the reasoning for the different archetypes.


 Why leave it out for 9 to find in the first place? If 9 found it, then the Brain couldn't have it, but there is the risk that the Brain would then get it, and then it would have to be reversed, etc.

Why didn't he simply destroy it after the creation of the last Ragdoll so the Brain would never get it, never be reborn, never cause any trouble?


It is shown that after the scientist uses the device to create 9, he falls over, lifeless.  Presumably, 9 was the only remaining bit of his soul left after the first 8, and using the device to create 9 left an empty shell.  Thus it is not possible for him to destroy the device and create 9.  He must have known 9 was the last time he would be able to use the device, since he left him an explanation video.


Well, I hope that helps a little bit.  I don't have any explanation for the rest of your questions.  I can speculate that the device was originally created as intending to be some kind of device to power or use with the brain, before the brain went bad.  The creation of the 9 came about afterwards as a measure of necessity.  That may answer the question of why even have the device fit the brain in the first place, if it will just cause bad things to happen.


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