director Neill Blomkamp
The kids are both pretty keen on seeing Chappie (2015), which opens next week. Chappie looks, to me, quite a bit like director Neill Blomkamp’s earlier film, District 9 is a lot of ways, maybe in its milieu and characters, since it’s about robots and artificial intelligence rather than crustacean-like aliens. It was also shot in South Africa. I thought the kids might enjoy it.
My kids are a teen and a tween at the moment, developing more and more interest in pop culture, coming movies, this that and the other thing. My son in particular has been interested in a bunch of movies that came out in the last 10 years, ones he was too young for on their initial release. We’ve watched both Batman Begins (2005) and The Dark Knight (2008) and he’s champing at the bit for The Dark Knight Rises (2012).
We watch a lot of movies together. I actually prefer to watch movies with the kids than on my own if I have the option. But I’m interested in exploring the whole spectrum of films, from the silents to the newest releases. I can honestly say that the movies I’m least interested in revisiting overall are the ones from the past decade that I’ve seen and haven’t built up the amount of time yet to feel the need to see them again.
I liked District 9 when I saw it. And heck, it’s been 6 years. But I wasn’t so bothered about seeing it again.
It’s good. It holds up. And the kids both liked it (though they both thought it was pretty gory — an aspect that I’d probably forgotten about). The effects actually look to have held up better than I often perceive digital effects to hold up. I’d forgotten how beholden to Robocop (1987) the film was.
The film put both Blomkamp and star Sharlto Copley on the map. Blomkamp hasn’t yet delivered so much. Even he now says that Elysium (2013) was a disappointment. But Chappie looks good. And his new Alien (1979) sequel has the internet all excited. So who knows? He may still develop into a more interesting mainstream sci-fi director as yet.