Is A District 9 Sequel Necessary?

Is A District 9 Sequel Necessary?

Neill Blomkamp seemingly became an overnight success when he debuted one of the boldest and best films of the early 2000s, District 9. The film is about a distinct future where aliens and humans live in one world: however, it’s not exactly paradise for the mysterious creatures. When a field agent of the Multi-National United contracts a virus that begins to transform him into one of those aliens, he must go to the only place he can hide: District 9. The sci-fi feature was both a critical and commercial success, and there have been plenty of whispers about a potential sequel that continues the story. The last update about another installment was when Blomkamp revealed that he was penning a script for District 10 in 2021.

District 9 was a bold exercise in filmmaking and easily a strong movie that deserved all the praise and accolades it received following its release. However, the story ends with Wilkus turning full alien and two of the mysterious creatures finally going home. Blomkamp has been teasing a sequel well before the first film was released, so the ending actually does open the possibilities of more exploration into the story of Wilkus or his alien friend. The Multi-National United agent’s journey isn’t exactly complete. He’s a beautiful alien now, and there was a promise to return him to his original state from his fellow brother once he goes back home. Instantly, the question for the sequel is: Can Wilkus get a cure that will turn him back into a human? There are plenty of avenues to dig into when going back into the world of District 9. How is he surviving the world as a foreign alien? The film showcased just how terrible these creatures were treated, but it would be an interesting perspective to see the worldview through the eyes of Wilkus. Surely, he won’t just stand by and accept the fact that these creatures are essentially Guinea pigs for the vast experiments tested on them.

Has he revolted and started a revolution? Is the District 9 world a wasteland that has been overrun by aliens? Or have the humans gotten worse in their treatment of the creatures since they caused such a ruckus last time? What’s great about District 9 is that despite it being over a decade since the first movie, there doesn’t have to be a time jump. I’m no expert on alien aging, but based on the film, there’s no need to explain the time period because Wilkus can look exactly the same since he’s no longer human. Should the end of his journey result in him turning back into his original form, that’s nothing that the FX or make-up department can’t handle, though a simple piece of dialogue can explain why he’s age up a bit since his last appearance. Plus, the B-story has also been set-up, which is the alien going home to make the cure. Heck, if Blomkamp really wanted to, he could easily make the alien story the prime focus with Wilkus’s story being secondary.

Exactly where do these aliens live? What’s their culture in their home planet? Is there world identical to Earth? It’s fascinating stuff and District 9 did an excellent job setting up those questions without making the first film feel incomplete. Whether it was intentional or not, District 9 works by it’s lonesome because there’s a firm beginning, middle, and end that doesn’t necessarily require a sequel. Sure, there’s plenty of lingering questions, but the film wasn’t blatantly holding back so audiences would have to shell out more money to pay for the sequel. The only problem stems from the fact that Blomkamp hasn’t exactly been the same since his quick rise following District 9.

Look, filmmaking is hard. I know from experience, so I’m not going to trash the writer/director here; There’s no doubt that Blomkamp is extremely talented because great films aren’t made by accident. However, there’s been a noticeable decline in his recent films. This isn’t to say that Blomkamp can’t make another great movie, but if the filmmaker feels that the script isn’t even as close to as good or (ever better) than the first movie then it’s better to simply scrap the project or bring in someone else to help out with the feature. Still, a District 10 is one of the few sequels that’s actually warranted. There’s still plenty of questions that needs to be answered and it would be great to see Wilkus make the transition back into a human. Even if a sequel never comes out, then District 9 works perfectly as a standalone feature.

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