9 (2009 film): Wikis

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9

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Shane Acker
Produced by Tim Burton
Timur Bekmambetov
Jim Lemley
Dana Ginsburg
Jinko Gotoh
Written by Screenplay:
Pamela Pettler
Story:

Shane Acker
Starring Elijah Wood
John C. Reilly
Jennifer Connelly
Christopher Plummer
Crispin Glover
Martin Landau
Fred Tatasciore
Music by Deborah Lurie
Theme Music:
Danny Elfman
Editing by Nick Kenway
Studio Universal Studios
Distributed by Focus Features
DVD Release:
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Release date(s) September 9, 2009 (2009-09-09)
Running time 80 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $30,000,000
Gross revenue $41,859,395 (worldwide)[1]

9 is a 2009 computer-animated fantasy/action adventure film directed by Shane Acker and produced by Tim Burton and Timur Bekmambetov. The film stars Elijah Wood, John C. Reilly, Jennifer Connelly, Crispin Glover, Martin Landau and Christopher Plummer.[2][3] It is based on Acker's Academy Award-nominated 2005 short film of the same name.[4] The screenplay for the film was written by Pamela Pettler. Casting for 9 was done by Mindy Marin, with production design by Robert St. Pierre and Fred Warter, and art direction by Christophe Vacher.

Contents

Plot

Prior the events of the film, a unnamed man referred to as The Scientist created the B.R.A.I.N. (or the Fabrication Machine) for peaceful purposes and to help evolve mankind's technology. However, the leader of mankind took control of the machine and used it to wage war on other humans. With the lack of a human soul, the machine was corrupted and turned on mankind, wiping them out using other machines and poisonous gases. The Scientist constructed nine robot-like homunculi referred to as "Stitchpunks", each one alive via a portion of the Scientist's soul, and created an amulet which could be used to destroy the Fabrication Machine. The Scientist died shortly after creating the last of the Stitchpunks, 9.

9 awakens at the start of the film, taking the amulet with him. Outside, in the lifeless and devastated world, 9 meets fellow Stitchpunk 2, who gives him a vocal processor to speak. However, they are attacked by a machine called the "Cat-Beast" and 2 is captured. 9 is saved by one-eyed 5 who takes him to Sanctuary, an abandoned cathedral and home to the Stitchpunks, led by 1, and his bodyguard 8. 9 decides to rescue 2 from an old factory, aided by 5. The two locate 2 and the "Cat-Beast" is destroyed by 7, the only female Stitchpunk and a skilled warrior. 9 spots the shutdown Fabrication Machine where the amulet connects to, awakening it. It attacks 2 and sucks out his lifeforce, the soul being the machine's power source. The Stitchpunks retreat to 3 and 4's hideout where they reveal the machine's origins. 9 realises they need to remove the amulet from the machine and returns to Sanctuary where 6 points out they need to return to a disclosed source. Sanctuary is attacked by a bird-like robot, which is destroyed, but as is Sanctuary.

A snake-like robot, the "Seamstress", kidnaps 7 and 8. 9 pursues it and witnesses 8 being killed by the Fabrication Machine, but rescues 7 before destroying the factory where the machine is, seemingly destroying it as well. The surviving Stitchpunks celebrate, but the machine rises and kills 5, and 6 soon after, the latter warning 9 that the souls of the deceased Stitchpunks are within the machine and it should not be destroyed, as well as the source is in the Scientist's workshop where 9 awoke. 9 goes to the workshop and finds a video recording which explains how the amulet can be used to destroy the machine and free the trapped souls. 9 returns to the others who plan to destroy the machine. During the following battle, 9 prepares to sacrifice himself to defeat the machine, but 1 sacrifices himself to allow 9 to remove the amulet and destroy the machine.

The film ends with 9, 7, 3 and 4 releasing the souls of 1, 2, 5, 6 and 8, who fly up into the sky and cause it to rain, the raindrops containing green liquid in them, hinting that life in the world isn't gone after all.

Cast and characters

  • Elijah Wood as 9, the final creation of the scientist. 9 is a sincere, kind, and honest stitchpunk who carries the Scientist's true human qualities: bravery and courage. He is the last to be created as the Scientist dies immediately after he transferred his spirit to him and the last to awaken. 9 asks many questions, a few of which 1 declares "pointless." He makes mistakes, but all in all, he has a good heart and does the right thing. He has a crush on 7.
  • Fred Tatasciore as 8, who came into being for the purpose of protecting the stitchpunks from the evil machine uprising. He wields the metal core of a kitchen utility knife and a scissor blade. The none-too-bright muscle and enforcer of the group, 8 bullies some of the others, especially 6. He seems to enjoy applying a magnet to the circuitry in his head, which may explain his comparatively low intelligence.
  • Jennifer Connelly as 7. A brave, dexterous and self-sufficient warrior, 7 is the only female in the group. A fiercely independent adventurer, she has been out patrolling the wasteland. To survive, she has adapted, finding the bones of a bird and crafting her signature skull helmet. 7 is made of canvas; she is also graceful, kind, and caring, although overall she is a complete warrior, once seen taking down a machine all by herself. She shows a more vulnerable side towards the end.
  • Crispin Glover as 6, a reclusive and eccentric artist. Unlike the others, he constantly sees visions, and he repeatedly draws what he sees, which mostly include the talisman. He constantly mumbles about "going back to the source" but, being very difficult to understand, 6 is often dismissed. He also (as 3 and 4 sometimes do) acts somewhat like a younger child (like when he is trying to catch a piece of ash from the church fire). His fingertips are made of pen nibs, stained by ink. He is made of striped fabric and has one eye larger than the other. 6 wears a key around his neck which he protects with his life throughout the film. 9 is the only one in the group that seems to want to try to understand what 6 is trying to say. Before his death, he tells 9 one more time to 'go back to the source', and that the souls of the other stichpunks are still inside the machine before he accepts his death with dignity.
  • John C. Reilly as 5, who is a caring, nurturing, one-eyed engineer. He is loyal, trusting and big-hearted, but also timid and meek. He is also the apprentice of 2, with whom he shares a special bond. He lost his left eye during a machine attack some time ago. He carries a pack on his shoulder filled with weapons and tools that the group uses (it also sports a button sewn onto the back).
  • 3 and 4 are scholarly twins who voraciously catalog everything they can see and find, recording and building a database of the world that surrounds them and the history that led up to their creation. Unlike the other Stitchpunks, 3 and 4 cannot speak, but they communicate to each other by a series of flashes they can make from their eyes which can also be used to play video clips and 'catalog' things. They are curious and playful, but also shy and timid, they act very much like small children. 3 and 4 are made from a pair of gardening gloves, resulting in their cowled appearance, and the cape-like empty thumb hanging from their backs.
  • Martin Landau as 2, the Scientist's second creation. 2 is a kindly inventor and explorer who embodies the Scientist's strong creative spirit. 2 is shown as fearless in the film with an inquisitive personality. Due to his constant excursions through the wastelands, his body has sustained much wear and tear, making him frail and delicate. However, he uses a candle-lit helmet to help him see better. Shane Acker (9's creator) affectionately describes him as "A salty old sea dog.".
  • Christopher Plummer as 1, is the Scientist's first creation. As the oldest of the group, he is the self-declared leader of all the stitchpunks (though not all agree with his leadership, which leads to some conflicts). He ostensibly sent 2 out to scout, hoping that he would be killed in the process (1's excuse for his actions are: "He was old and weak."). 1 is stubborn and also irritable and cowardly. He has set down rules which he expects the others to follow, and does not allow anyone to venture out into the wastelands. He frequently quarrels with 9. 1 wears a red cape, and a Mitire, he also caries a Crosier (the Mitire is the hat of a bishop and a Croiser is the staff of the bishop, like a shepard's crook)
  • Alan Oppenheimer as the Scientist, who created the stitchpunks and also invented the B.R.A.I.N. Each of the stitchpunks contains a portion of the Scientist's soul. They each contain one of his qualities and his flaws. He used the talisman to transfer part of his soul out and supply each with life. At the beginning of the film one of the first things 9 comes across is the Scientist's lifeless body sprawled on the floor, which frightens him. Trying to make up for his creation, B.R.A.I.N., he creates the stitchpunks, hoping that they will continue the spark of life.

Production

9 was produced in part by Tim Burton, Timur Bekmambetov and Jim Lemley, and released on September 9, 2009. Animation began in Luxembourg at Attitude Studio, but subsequently moved to Starz Animation in Toronto, Canada.[5] The film was released by Focus Features.

Director Shane Acker at the 2009 San Diego Comic-Con International

Shane Acker directed the film and wrote the story. Pamela Pettler and Ben Gluck wrote the script.

Music

While the stitchpunks are celebrating, "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" by Judy Garland plays on a vinyl record. Welcome Home by Coheed and Cambria plays in the trailer for the film, with minor censoring.

KOCH released the soundtrack CD which was only available on iTunes before the movie was released. It includes the themes created by Danny Elfman, Deborah Lurie's intense, beautiful score and the 19th track being "Welcome Home"

Track listing:

  1. "Introduction" [1:42]
  2. "Finding Answers" [1:48]
  3. "Sanctuary" [2:12]
  4. "Winged Beast" [4:28]
  5. "Reunion/Searching For Two" [2:12]
  6. "The Machines" [0:58]
  7. "Out There" [2:42]
  8. "Twins" [1:36]
  9. "Slaying the Beast" [1:21]
  10. "Return of the Machines" [2:47]
  11. "Burial" [1:24]
  12. "Reawakening" [3:10]
  13. "The Aftermath" [1:41]
  14. "Confrontation" [1:53]
  15. "The Seamstress" [2:05]
  16. "Return to the Workshop" [1:54]
  17. "The Purpose" [5:20]
  18. "Release" [4:00]
  19. "Welcome Home" - Coheed And Cambria [6:15]

Marketing

On December 25, 2008, a trailer was released on Apple.com, featuring The Knife's "The Captain" and Coheed and Cambria's "Welcome Home".[6]

In the trailer there were several machines up against the stitchpunk group: the Cat Beast, an ape-like ambush predator that appeared in the short film of the same title; The Winged Beast, a raptor-like with movable blades of various types in its mouth; the Seamstress, a hypnotic serpent; Mech Walkers, large two-legged machines armed with a machine gun and poison gas missiles which can kill in a matter of seconds; the Fabrication Machine, a cyclopic, spider-like machine with many multi-jointed arms; and Seeker, several flying zeppelin machines with searchlights.[6] Later trailers also reveal the existence of several small ant-like machines.

Part of the film's marketing strategy was its release date of September 9, 2009 ("9/9/09").

9 is the second animated feature film to be released by Focus Features, the first being Coraline, based on the book by Neil Gaiman. The trailer for 9 preceded the film Coraline when it was shown in theaters and released on DVD.

A second trailer for 9 first appeared on G4's Attack of the Show. It is an extensive trailer which includes a bit of the background story behind the existence of the stitchpunks.

In April 2009, the film's "Scientist" began making journal entries on a Facebook page called "9 Scientist". Daily thoughts and images of his inventions are updated frequently. The "9 Scientist" Facebook page seemingly references events leading up to the release of the film.[7]

Most recently, a new viral campaign promotional website for 9 has been launched. It sheds some light upon the background of the 9 world.[8]

Since the work of The Scientist is ultimately responsible for the destruction of mankind, it is of some note that the actor who plays this role, Alan Oppenheimer is the cousin of scientist Robert Oppenheimer, the "Father of the Atomic Bomb".[citation needed]

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Home video

9 was released on Blu-ray and DVD on December 29, 2009 in US (region 1) and was released on February 22, 2010 in Europe (region 2).[9]

Video game

Shortly before the film's release, Apple, Inc. released a mobile game adaptation entitled 9: The Game for the iPhone and iPod Touch. The plot is similar to the movie's plot, with minor differences.

It got mixed reviews from buyers.

Reception

Critical

9 has received mixed to positive reviews from critics, with its visuals being the most highly praised aspect. Based on 170 reviews collected by Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an overall "Rotten" approval rating of 57% from critics, with the Top Critics ranking it slightly higher, giving it a "Fresh" rating of 65% and the film having an average score of 6/10.[10] On Metacritic, it currently holds a score of 60 out of 100 indicating mixed or average reviews.[11] The general sentiment by critics is that the film is "long on imaginative design but less substantial in narrative."[12] Variety's Todd McCarthy says "In the end, the picture's impact derives mostly from its design and assured execution."[13]

Box office

On opening day, the film made #1 with $3,115,775. Its opening weekend landed it at #2 behind I Can Do Bad All By Myself with approximately $10,856,000 and $15,264,000 for its 5-day opening.[14] As of November 29, 2009, the film has grossed US$41,859,395 worldwide.[1]

Awards and nominations

  • Honored with the Winsor McCay Award [for career achievement] (producer Tim Burton)
Awards
Award Category Recipient(s) Outcome
Annie Awards
Best Animated Effects in a Feature Production Alexander Feigin Nominated
Best Production Design in a Feature Production Christophe Vacher Nominated
Producers Guild of America Awards Producer of the Year in Animated Motion Picture Nominated
Visual Effects Society Awards Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture Ken Duncan, Jinko Gotoh, Daryl Graham, Joe Ksander Nominated
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Best Animated Film Nominated

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "9 (2009)". Box Office Mojo. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=9.htm. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Shane Acker's 9". Cartoon Brew. http://www.cartoonbrew.com/cgi/shane-ackers-9. Retrieved February 15, 2007. 
  3. ^ "Strong cast lines up for animated 9.". The Film Asylum. http://www.thefilmasylum.com/newsitem.php?subaction=showfull&id=1174490932&archive=&start_from=&ucat=2. Retrieved March 21, 2007. 
  4. ^ Dennis Michael (July 26, 2005). "Burton Votes for 9". filmstew. http://www.filmstew.com/ShowArticle.aspx?ContentID=11979. Retrieved December 26, 2008. 
  5. ^ "New Starz studio busy on Burton's 9". Playback Magazine. http://www.playbackonline.ca/articles/magazine/20070917/starz.html. Retrieved September 17, 2007. 
  6. ^ a b "Apple - Trailers - 9". Apple. http://www.apple.com/trailers/focus_features/9/. Retrieved December 27, 2008. 
  7. ^ "9 Scientist Facebook Page". Focus Features. http://www.facebook.com/9scientist/. Retrieved May 27, 2009. 
  8. ^ "9 Experiment Page". Focus Features. http://www.9experiment.com/. Retrieved May 27, 2009. 
  9. ^ http://www.dvdtimes.co.uk/content.php?contentid=71719
  10. ^ "9 (2009)". Rotten Tomatoes. http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1205483_nine/. Retrieved November 19, 2009. 
  11. ^ "9 Reviews". Metacritic. http://www.metacritic.com/film/titles/9. Retrieved November 19, 2009. 
  12. ^ "9 Movie Reviews". USA Today. Gannett Company. http://www.usatoday.com/life/movies/reviews/2009-09-08-nine_N.htm/. Retrieved September 1, 20093. 
  13. ^ McCarthy, Todd (August 18, 2009). "9 Review". Variety. Archived from the original on November 19, 2009. http://www.webcitation.org/5lOMOghWz. Retrieved November 19, 2009. 
  14. ^ http://boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/?yr=2009&wknd=37&p=.htm

External links


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