"District 9" - My choice for Achievement in Direction, Screenplay, Cinematography - or at least one of those.
Oh how thrilled I was when "District 9" was included in the long list of Oscar nominees for Best Picture. Naturally it won't win, but the acknowledgment is a big deal already. Truth is "District 9" was a surprise discovery for me too. My first thought was - "another alien invasion movie? Nah" And then I saw a review calling it an alien movie for "thinking audience." Now that was more interesting and it also proved very true.
Set in South Africa, "District 9" has all the thrills of an alien/monster action movie with plenty of killings, chases and graphic violence. And in the same time its full of allusions to segregation, racism, human rights, individual freedoms, double standards and human greed.
Shot in part as documentary, it keep you (or at least kept me) glued to the screen to the very end and doesn't give you a moment's rest. Note: there are no even remotely familiar actors in this movie.