9: Movie review

Published: Sep 12, 2009, 08:17 IST | Tushar Joshi |

9 seems like Tim Burton's adaptation of Terminators. Opening in a post-apocalyptic scenario, the film is a story of 9 ragged dolls fighting for their lives against an oppressive machine

9
u/a; animation
Dir: Shane Acker
Cast: Elijah Wood, Jennifer Connelly, John C Reilly
**½

What's it about: 9 seems like Tim Burton's adaptation of Terminators. Opening in a post-apocalyptic scenario, the film is a story of 9 ragged dolls fighting for their lives against an oppressive machine that threatens to suck their souls. While the human race is destroyed, its now up to these dolls to wage a war against the machines and ensure stability and peace on earth. Leading this mission is 9 (Elijah Wood) who along with a warrior doll 7  (Jennifer Connelly) and others take upon a giant killing machine that's capable of imprisoning lost souls. 
 
What's hot: The film has a Tim Burton trademark it's dark, brooding and the dialogues are witty and heavy on sarcasm. There are a couple of tricks in this bag that will interest you. Firstly, the animation is brilliant and so is the backdrop and setting of a war-torn world. Elijah Wood is earnest and genuine as 9 the leader of the pack who's only set out to correct his wrongs. His human-like ability to fail and make mistakes is well captured. The scene with the machines taking on the dolls with its multiple inventions is engrossing. Judy Garland's rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow in the climax is a welcome surprise. 
 
What's not: Unlike Coraline, which is not just visually a winner but also packs in a solid story, 9 doesn't do much with its storyline. It struggles in many parts to keep up to its visual razzmatazz. While the sights score with its effects, the characters fall flat and vice-versa. Also the zoozoo like dolls alienate you despite their puppy-eyed buttons and criss-crossed smiles. Do not mistake it as a film for kids cause they won't really get it. Acker packs in enough colors, but misses out on soul.

What to do: Not high on content, watch it if you study animation. It's new-age stuff, but the story lacks any punch.

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