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9 DNA splices for "District 9" (Spoilers)


The new sci-fi film "District 9"  has generated a lot of excitement. It's "fiercely original" says producer Peter Jackson  and according to its legions of fans, like nothing you've ever seen. At the risk of having those fans burn down my house, I've got to say that it's actually like a lot of films I've seen all mashed together. In the film the protagonist accidentally has alien DNA fused with his own. It seems to me the film has fused together the DNA of a number of other movies. Here's a partial list of some. Needless to say, it's filled with spoilers.

1. "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (1977).  


A giant mother ship hovers over the earth as the humans below look on in amazement.                                                                            

2. "Starship Troopers"  (1997).

The aliens look like giant insects, are physically much stronger than humans and seem controlled by  a single mind, like bees or ants.                                                                                                        

3. "Alien Nation" (1988).

Millions of them settle on earth where they are despised and discriminated against.                                               

4. "Alien" (1979).                                                                   

An all-powerful mega-corporation secretly wants to use the aliens to develop new weapons systems.

5. "Star Trek" (2009).

A mysterious liquid ("red matter") is needed to power space flight and/or weapons.

6. "Alien" (1979).

A human being is exposed to alien reproductive matter when an object unexpectedly discharges it, causing the human to metamorphose.

7. "The Fly" (1986).

As the human mutates into the species whose DNA he shares, he sheds such vestigial organic material as fingernails and teeth.

8. "Aliens" (1986)

In one key conflict scene someone must get into a robotic fighting suit to defeat the enemy.

9. "E.T: the Extraterrestial" (1982).

Ultimately a human must help an alien return to its home planet.

I'm sure there are many other genetic splicings I have overlooked. By the way, I don't list these necessarily as a criticism. Actually, I found the film ingenious and provocative. And don't get me started on its paranoid conspiracy subtext.



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