I’m about to say something that may attract me a lot of hate. Ready? I think District 9 is overwhelmingly over-rated. I found very little enjoyment in the film. The change from documentary style filming to action film was one that really felt uneven, and the plot did not entice me in anyway. So you can imagine I was less than enthusiastic about Elysium. To be honest, I’m not too big on Sci-Fi films; the thought of watching one always puts me off. And that’s why there are some legendary examples of the genre I haven’t seen yet, such as Blade Runner, Metropolis, Sunshine etc. But Elysium was a film that my friend was eager to see. Therefore, I had to give it a chance. And by that point, it appealed to me a lot more, but I still had my doubts. Could Neill Blomkamp win me over this time round, or would it fall down to its predecessor’s level?
So as you can see, Elysium differs from District 9 greatly, creating and exploring a whole new world as part of a much more complex and character driven premise. So, where do I start? I’m genuinely struggling here. I really should’ve thanked my friend for convincing me to watch the film as it was a truly fantastic piece of Sci-Fi entertainment. At its heart, it’s a popcorn film, but layered with enough intelligence to be considered a serious tale of the battle between rich and poor. This alone shows the excellent writing skills of Neill Blomkamp, who clearly knows what he wants to do and how he wants to do it with his plots.
And before we move on, credit goes to Neill Blomkamp once again for not only writing this fascinating space station and all of its logic but for bringing it to life with direction that is an absolute treat for the eyes. Elysium from the outside is a beautiful sight, but everything looks great on Earth too. So whilst I wasn’t quite swayed with his style in District 9, I can now say I look forward to any of Blomkamp’s future films.
But, none of them compare to Sharlto Copley.....Oh my. Having reteamed with Blomkamp following District 9, Copley absolutely kills it in this film. Sure, you could argue that his performance is very scenery chewing and over the top, and it’s true, Kruger is insane. But he’s a villain that you just can’t help but like. Copley’s performance is so out of control yet so in power at the same time, he’s an absolute blast to watch.
If you liked District 9, then there’s no doubt you’ll like this, but even if you didn’t, give it a shot. I did, and now this film has crept its way into my favourites of 2013. With a great script, beautiful visuals and stellar cast, Elysium is an action packed, always fun yet always smart Sci-Fi from a man who is destined to achieve even more greatness.
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