TGB Breakdown Ep 14: Neill Blomkamp's District 9 (Guest: Brian Roan)

August 20, 2013

TGB Breakdown Ep 14: Blomkamp's District 9

On this episode of The Golden Briefcase Breakdown, hosts Tim & Jeremy are joined by The Film Stage Show host Brian Roan (from Episode #166) for a spoiler-filled discussion on Neill Blomkamp's feature debut District 9, the 2009 South African sci-fi action movie which introduced us to Sharlto Copley. The purpose of Breakdown episodes is to to ponder, discuss and challenge the films that we feel often need more than just a simple review. We breakdown the film to discuss plots and theories in order to better understand the director's vision and hopefully challenge our listeners at home to re-evaluate the way they watch cinema.

Extra episodes of TGB Breakdown will be arriving about every month, and will appear here in addition to all of our regular weekly Golden Briefcase episodes. Beware - every episode of TGB Breakdown will contain SPOILERS for the film in discussion (this one for Neill Blomkamp's District 9). You've been WARNED!

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The Movie:

District 9 (2009) - Directed by Neill Blomkamp; Written by Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell

Our Guest:

Brian J. Roan: @BrianJRoan

The Golden Briefcase is:

Tim Buel: @timbuel
Jeremy Kirk: @JeremyKKirk

Thank you for listening to TGB Breakdown. Have a film you want to hear go through the Breakdown? Shoot us an email to or a voicemail (805-416-2131) and we would be glad to include it in a future edition! Any other feedback, compliments, discussion, even hate mail, can be sent to us via email.

Find more posts: Golden Briefcase, Podcasts, Sci-Fi



I found District 9 to be quite over-rated. I feel like the weaknesses displayed in Blomkamp's style are just now being 'noticed' in Elysium. D-9 was certainly good, and different...but I'm baffled that it was nominated for Best Picture. But then again, The Hurt Locker of all movies won that year, and it is even more over-rated.

Chris Groves on Aug 20, 2013


I didn't like that they changed the narrative style whenever it was convenient...there was no 'here is the rule,play by it' with D-9. I also didn't like that there was so much 'post-event documentary' footage with characters from the film. Wikus' partner, his wife, his soon as you seem them talking in hindsight about the events of the film, you know that they aren't going to die or be in any serious jeopardy over the course of the film. The guy that gets no vest going into D-9? No tension there because we just saw him talking about the whole event after the fact. The over-the-top violence was also heavy handed. It seemed like it was forced just to 'get a reaction' from the audience. 'Well...lets just show another exploding body, they'll like that' It didn't feel like it was with the overall tone of the film like a Verhoeven movie or the recent 'Dredd'. It was just crazy violence just for the sake of crazy violence. Del Toro did MUCH better world-building in Pacific Rim than Blomkamp did in D-9, and as far as the sci-fi king of 2009 goes, Avatar, Star Trek, and Moon were all better. It sounds like I hate it, it's a good movie...but good lord, terribly over-rated.

Chris Groves on Aug 20, 2013


Oh yes, I also didn't like that the main character didn't seem to have any sympathy for the aliens and their plight until he started to become one himself...

Chris Groves on Aug 20, 2013


Hip-Hip-Hooray It's Golden Briefcase Day! Sorry I have not commented as regularly. I moved to South Korea, guys! Let's just say SNOWPIERCER is very good.

DAVIDPD on Aug 29, 2013

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