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View Full Version : So... "9" the animated movie. (mild spoilers)


Push You Down
09-09-2009, 01:35 PM
"9" (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0472033/)

I saw a sneak preview last night (it opens today).

I didn't NOT like it. It was very visually interesting. I never got bored but I never really got that much into it.

The world it created was interesting with sci-fi mechanical monsters and magic. The flashbacks were actually the best parts in my opinion.

Parents use your judgement. It's not for little kids. I'd say 8 and up? There's a particularly grisly discovery in wrecked car at the very begining of the movie. There's one or two jump scares but otherwise it's a lot of action and loud noises.

maladroit
09-09-2009, 10:07 PM
I just got back from seeing it at the Imax. I'm F/53/sci-fi fan my whole life, so I really enjoyed it. It was beautiful to look at, the character development and plot movement went at a good pace, even the foley work impressed me. Loads of textures, visual and audio. I got vertigo a couple times (love that!) There was a little girl in the theater, she looked maybe 6? There was no screaming or crying children, but still there were some intense scary parts (however brief) so if your kiddies are sensitive I'd get a sitter. I also approved of the length, not too long but tells a complete story (1hr 15 iirc?) I went to the 6:50 showing, I was surprised there were only maybe 100 people.

BomTek
09-09-2009, 10:23 PM
SPOILERS, because I don't know how to hide them... I came away with a few questions that I hope my fellow Dopers can help me out with, and I'm sure I'll think of more.
First, I didn't get what the 9 sentient ragdolls were supposed to do. I know I'd need to see this movie again to understand it better, but if they were 9 parts separate of one person's soul, and there was no organic life left on earth (did I at least get that part right?), what was the point of The Scientist's creating them?
I understand that 9 was supposed to find the animated music box first thing upon awakening, but if he had and opened the trinket with the sequence shown, what, if anything, would have happened?
What was the point of creating both 3 and 4 if they both do the same thing?
I understand that 1 through 8 came to life before The Scientist died, but did he neglect to give them any instructions or advice before he continued on making other dolls? It seems like they had to figure everything out for themselves.
How did The Scientist get the trinket, why did the machine need it to turn back on, and how did the machine work without the trinket in the flashbacks? Related to that last one, how did the humans shut the machine down in between the flashbacks and the start of the movie?
I'm with Push in that I didn't NOT like it. I just didn't understand it, but I really want to.

ETA: Apparently the dolls are called stitchpunks, at least according to Wikipedia. Kinda cool, in my opinion, and good info for the rest of the Dopers who post in this thread.

BomTek
09-09-2009, 10:58 PM
'Nother edit... apparently the thing I called the trinket is actually "the talisman."

maladroit
09-09-2009, 11:22 PM
The little dolls were to counter The Machine, which got the Inventor's mind but not his soul. The little guys got his soul. War Machine bad, team work and compassion good.

Push You Down
09-10-2009, 12:34 PM
It really falls apart if you think about it on more than just the surface level. None of it makes sense if you start asking why.

To me the obvious solution and what I thought was happening was that the warmachine was absorbing the life-energy from the dolls in order to keep going (a form of magic electricity)... but as to why the souls still lived inside the warmachine didn't really make sense. I assumed that they'd actually have to let the Warmachine absorb them and thereby combine the Brain and the Soul. The former War Machine could then create non-monstrous creatures to repopulate the planet, essentially becoming God.

maladroit
09-10-2009, 04:03 PM
I like your ending better, but I think the little guys combined the intellect and the soul since they used their intellect to repair and innovate, in addition to hanging out in churches and libraries, and dancing, and end-of-life rituals.

Spatial Rift 47
09-11-2009, 11:43 AM
What was the point of creating both 3 and 4 if they both do the same thing?

I can answer this one, at least: Increased computational power. There's a shot or two where, having heard a question, they stare into each other's eyes and flash lights at each other. That's computation. Just one of them can absorb and recall information, but together they can analyze and interpret. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

Push You Down
09-11-2009, 01:02 PM
Less practical, I assumed that the Scientist realized that the doll that got the thirst for knowledge aspect of his soul would have a lonely and unsocial existence, so he created two of them- for company.

sean.carmichael
09-13-2009, 10:54 AM
So I am sure that my opinion will cause disbelief and denial for some but here it goes. This movie was another one of the many movies made by those who have the ability to do so be it because they have money or connections they produce movies with the long term goal to indoctrinate the masses of middle and poor classes looking to enjoy themselves to an entertaining movie.

If you are still reading, Please don't stop. Hear me out.

So my take on this particular movie,
Some of the questions posed are irrelevant for the author’s intended message and for that reason further development was unnecessary. A few of these questions were: Where does it show The Machine needing "the talisman"and how did the scientist get it back from it? (My guess would be that the scientist, being the one who created The Machine, either knew of a way to get it or figured it out somehow). Why the scientist didn't just make one ragdoll or "stitch-punks" with his whole soul, but I’m sure that the SCIENTIST was thinking of the future teamwork possibilities. What were the meanings of the 9 different stitch punks’ characters personalities and numbers especially #9, beyond that of the plot? Why #9 did not just find the box with the animated message first, learn how the use the so called "talisman" and avoid all the tragedy that ensued?

We could go on but the fact is that the scientist did get "the talisman" from the machine and according to the plot flaw or not The Machine did need it to function. The scientist made 9 stitch punks all with part of his soul (he must have had a switch on his soul taking device set to one ninth once again all along planning to make 9 dolls). Number 9 didn’t see the animation until number six somehow knew to tell him where to look.

This movie shows several messages trying to get the audience to see the evil battle against good and evil. It says to the audience chose god or science, war or peace, intellect or soul. The movie portrays these very controversial topics in a way that anyone watching would be unaware of the subtle indoctrination taking place.

For time shortage reasons I will just mention a few quick supporting scenes for my allegations. So the factory represents the Evil world of science and industry taking us away from god. The church that the stitch punks as I mentioned miraculously found themselves in as if some higher being guided them to this SANCTUARY from the harsh world. Interesting to note that the church later burned down as a result of the products of the world (in this case the flying machine). The author showed the audience the flashbacks of the war caused by the irresponsibility of scientist and government. During the plot there are several scenes showing the drawbacks of war such as the heart ache and sorrow from the death of loved ones, in this case #’s 2,5,6,1,8. However there is a small hint to the benefit of their sacrifice for peace. The main battle of the story line was that of the scientist’s intellect vs. his soul. His intellect was downloaded into the machine and because the machine “lacked the human compassion” he turned against us. The scientist’s soul was in the stitch punks and they were sent to stop the machine. Of course the result is the soul ends up winning the battle and every stitch punk lives happily ever after. Side note on the religious/sacrificial ceremony that took place at the end it was very weird, unless you’re into that kind of thing. But because of religion’s triumph over the evil results of government/scientist, and the magical sacrifice at the end the earth will once again receive rain and come out of the darkness. 9&7 will of course get married but then again they haven’t been cultured on the informalities of marriage as we know it so perhaps they will just live together in sin and adopt 3&4.

FinnAgain
09-13-2009, 11:20 AM
Saw it opening night and was absolutely blown away.

True, those who are looking for some deep plot and nuanced thematic elements are going to be disappointed. Those who want to see some really awesome post apocalyptic landscapes and truly amazing steampunk monsters should definitely check this movie out.

Eyebrows 0f Doom
09-13-2009, 11:30 AM
I saw this yesterday. The animation was gorgeous but the story made no sense at all.

Spice Weasel
09-13-2009, 11:39 AM
The animation was gorgeous, the creatures both creative and terrifying, but I did feel somewhat let down by the nonsensical nature of the plot. I agree with sean.carmichael that the movie can be interpreted as hostile to scientific inquiry and the development of technology. It pretty explicitly pits soul against intellect, and soul wins. The message felt incredibly dated, as if it belonged in the 1950s somewhere. And I would definitely call this ''fantasy,'' not ''sci-fi.''

tiltawhirl
09-14-2009, 11:59 AM
I loved the action scenes. Having characters batted around like ragdolls makes a lot more sense when they actually are ragdolls.

I did not like the heavy-handed references to classic scenes from other movies as it took me out of the story.

Ranchoth
09-14-2009, 10:54 PM
Gorgeous movie, and surprisingly touching. Woulda been nice if they'd, y'know, marketed it. But I digress.

Let's see (SPOILERS probably to follow)...

-Yeah, a bit more exposition/interpersonal communication would have been nice. Though I'm increasingly used to that in animation.

-The "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" scene...Jeeeezus. :eek: :cool:

-Stylistically, I don't think it's quite "steampunk." I'd say it's closer to the less popular, and more ill-defined "dieselpunk (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/PunkPunk)."

-I didn't read it as a straight on anti science/technology theme, though. It seemed to be closer to Shelly's original Frankenstein—you have to put thought and responsibility behind your creations, or it all could go tragically out of control when it didn't have to.

I mean, the War Machine itself was originally built for peaceful purposes, but was taken away, before it was ready (witness the surprisingly heartbreaking bit in the film clip where the scientist and the early Machine are seperated by force, and the Machine is obviously trying to get away, reaching for it's creator. Yow.) and pressed into duties it wasn't intended for (wikipedia, apparently quoting from supplimental materials, even says it "snapped under pressure"). Science becomes not evil, but mistreated.

"Responsibility" seems like more of a central theme than anything else. The good machines don't accomplish anything by simply hiding from the world. They take losses from anything else, either by accident or attack, but being willing to accept the consequences and plow forward is the only way their problems get solved.

-7 was cute. I'm not ashamed to say that.

Future Londonite
09-15-2009, 05:19 AM
First, I didn't get what the 9 sentient ragdolls were supposed to do. I know I'd need to see this movie again to understand it better, but if they were 9 parts separate of one person's soul, and there was no organic life left on earth (did I at least get that part right?), what was the point of The Scientist's creating them?


My take on it is that the scientist saw that his machine was 'adjusted' by the government to become a machine of war which then got out of control since it lacked 'soul' and thus went to exterminate all organic life........The scientist created the stitchpunks for a dual purpose - one to destroy the 'machine' and the evil it represents and two to introduce organic life back to earth (the green specs in the raindrops at the very end).

My reasoning for creating more then one stitchpunk is the fact that the essence of his soul was needed to create life again and the scientist knew that only the 'machine' would be able to extract this essence out of the stitchpunks......

just my two cents though

ArrMatey!
09-15-2009, 11:57 AM
Saw it, enjoyed it, knew coming in that it wasn't a massive piece of literature, and I'm okay with that. I'm on the 'WarMachine was just Machine, misused' bandwagon. Also, as to the question of 3 and 4 being identical... Well, it took me a while to notice... They were made from a pair of gloves. Why only use one? :)

Also, about 1,

I thought before the reveal about their creation that he'd be The Dictator, using the technology to survive the war. I'm glad I was wrong about that. His last line was, to me, a great summation of why his character was the way he was: 'They left us nothing. Why do we have to clean up their messes?'

Malthus
09-15-2009, 12:03 PM
I saw it - beautiful but non-sensical. It is really a shame that all of that skill and ingenuity went into making a story so utterly lacking in substance.

The thing looked great, though. The post-apocalyptic landscapes and creatures were very, very well done.

Sir T-Cups
09-15-2009, 01:49 PM
Beautiful movie....2 things disappointed me however:

1. No rock music? Really? The music made the trailer, and I was expecting a rock/classical combination during the fights that would blow my head up....the music was pretty, but I wanted rock.

2. The ending. All he had to do was push the three buttons and this war mongering unstoppable god is just taken down like that? Freakin anti-aircraft tanks couldn't take this down yet buttons could? I was hoping for something a lot better than that....

h4mmst3r
09-16-2009, 06:12 PM
First post here, hello all :D

I usually like open ended movies. But speculating about unexplained things is only fun when its enjoyable to do so. In this case, it only becomes really frustrating.

I really wanted to like this movie. I had been waiting for it for quite some time. But there are so many questions about the movie that it takes so much speculation and personal assumptions to have it make any sense. Now that's frustrating.

[Spoilers, look out below!]

Here is a big one: Where have stitchpunks 1-8 been all this time? It was directly said that creations 1 and 2 are older than the others. And by the look of them, how old they look and act, and their early-looking designs, they look way older. Could even be years older, which asks a whole lot of other questions, but let's say they are at least months older. And the rest, could be weeks older for all we know. So as soon as they were created, where did they go? Did the scientist talk to them? Obviously not much other than maybe creations 1 and 2 because they all seemed to not know what the heck is going on. So did he just cast them out as soon as they were created? If I were imparting my soul into 9 parts, I'd first make sure they were safe and secure and at least knew why they were created. Or at the very least gave them some goal. With them being created at different times, it just doesn't make sense that they have no clue as to what is going on. #9 I excuse as he wakes up and the scientist is dead. But the rest? Well, I guess we are all going to have to make up that part of the story which is a vital part of the movie.

Here is another one: What was their purpose? The first response would be to counter the evil machine. But at the very least, the machine was deactivated by the time he created #9 because he had the source. And by the way, how did he get the source from the machine? And when? Anyway. So if he was the last human left alive, as far as the audience can tell, why didn't he just smash the source? He already made 8 soul puppets. Did he really have to make the 9th one, knowing full well he was going to die along with it? Did he really have to give the machine a chance to once again further destroy the Earth by allowing the source to live on?

In asking about what their purpose was, this leads to the conclusion. So what are they supposed to do now? Doesn't seem like they can reproduce. And even if they could, are we supposed to feel good about stitchpunks inheriting the Earth? But let's just say they can't. So what can they do? I guess they could replant the Earth. But for what? And for whom? The Earth is what they make of it. That's great. But what are they going to make of it? A planet-wide memorial for humans that no one but them four and maybe the critters that survived will see? I just don't get it. And if I've guessed right, I just don't understand why I would care. If pockets of humans did survive, like the scientist seem to just fine, they sure didn't even remotely hint at it.

I have many other questions, but that's more than enough.

You know a movie basically gave up when everyone who gives the movie a bit of thought all come up with the same plot that should have been. They should have made the evil machine turn good after ingesting all the stitchpunks' souls. As all the other stitchpunks were being killed off, #9 should have thought back to the line about "sacrificing one for the good of all" and figured out their purpose was to sacrifice themselves to the machine in order for it to turn good. That would have explained a lot, especially as to why the scientist couldn't tell them what their purpose was for, and would connect it further to the allusions the movie had made to the machine being sorta like God (it made other machines in its own image).

Whew! Glad I got that out of my system. Thanks.

Miller
09-17-2009, 01:41 AM
Just saw this tonight. I thought it was really... short. Disappointingly so. They really need to take an extra fifteen minutes or so during the first act to establish who these little doll people are, and what they're about. You're about three action set-pieces into the film before you know enough about the characters to really care for them one way or the other.

Imagine if, instead, after 9 wakes up, he meets the other stitchpunks and joins their tribe while they're all together. Take some time to setup the conflicts between the different characters. Establish that there are three dolls that have gone off on their own, and no one knows where they are. Give the others a reason for trusting and following 1. Then have him send 2 off on the suicide mission, sparking 9 and 5 to defy him and run off on the rescue mission. Later, take some time in the second act to slow down the action, and integrate the survivors of the original group with 7 and the twins, and build up the conflict between 7 and 1. This would make the part at the end of the second act, when 7 sides with 1 against 9, and agrees to destroy the machine, more meaningful. This would also give 9 more of a character arc, because now he's at a genuine low point.

I also didn't like the whole talisman thing. Having the machine be dormant, and get powered up by 9 doesn't make a lot of sense. As others have pointed out, how did the scientist get the talisman away from the machine? And when 7 first appears, she says something to 5 about how he and the others had "stopped fighting." Stopped fighting what? The cat-thing that you just killed without breaking a sweat? It would have made more sense if the machine had been running all along, but with the breakdown of society, had been reduced to making those junk-and-bone robots, instead of the towering killing machines it used during the war. Maybe the talisman allows it to go into high gear, making more dangerous creatures, or animating one of the war-robots, or something, but it should have been an constant, if weakened, threat since the war's end.

Lastly, I wish they'd ditched that woo about souls, particularly the stitch punk ghosts at the climax, which was pretty cringe-worthy. Have the talisman be the necessary component in creating new stitch punks. This lets the survivors be able to create an actual society, and re-enforces the idea that they're reclaiming the world for themselves. I get that the green dots in the raindrops was supposed to represent new life returning to the Earth, but it seems unlikely that that life is going to take the form of stitch punks sprouting from the Earth. The dolls aren't inheriting the world from us if there's only four of them, and no way for them to make more. They're just holding on to until whatever sprouts from that rainfall is read to take over.

All in all, I did like the movie. The setting was great, and I loved the design for the various monsters. But the script lacked any real character-driven drama, which is a shame, because it really did have good characters. They just didn't really have anything to do, except act as vehicles for a series of action scenes. The movie could have been a lot more than that.

Ranchoth
09-17-2009, 06:55 AM
Lastly, I wish they'd ditched that woo about souls, particularly the stitch punk ghosts at the climax, which was pretty cringe-worthy. Have the talisman be the necessary component in creating new stitch punks. This lets the survivors be able to create an actual society, and re-enforces the idea that they're reclaiming the world for themselves. I get that the green dots in the raindrops was supposed to represent new life returning to the Earth, but it seems unlikely that that life is going to take the form of stitch punks sprouting from the Earth. The dolls aren't inheriting the world from us if there's only four of them, and no way for them to make more. They're just holding on to until whatever sprouts from that rainfall is read to take over.

You know, this seems so obvious for an optimal ending that I almost wonder if the movie averted it on purpose. The movie then doesn't actually have a "happy" ending—it's a bittersweet, deliberately flawed one. Characters made mistakes, and though they tried to rectify them, and did their honest best, some of their problems just weren't solvable. No putting things back the way they were, no setting right what once went wrong, no bringing back the dead. Just managing to hang on, and do what they could with the cards fate's dealt them—which isn't much.

In a way, it's actually kind of refreshing—not a formulaic "happily ever after," but more than a mean-spirited "evil wins, everybody dies! Look how edgy I am for writing this!" ending. For everything else, the story and the ending feel very human.

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