Nine

"Very Good"

Nine Review


Based on Federico Fellini's 1963 classic 8 1/2, this musical has a nicely introspective tone as it follows a filmmaker struggling to move forward in his career after a few flops. The music isn't hugely memorable, but the characters are vivid.

Guido Contini (Day-Lewis) is a star director gearing up for his ninth movie.

The press is begging for details, and his producer (Tognazzi) wants to see the script. But with shooting starting in 10 days, Guido has yet to write a word.

Instead he's haunted by his muses: his patient wife Luisa (Cotillard), his needy mistress Carla (Cruz), his diva star Claudia (Kidman), his sardonic costume designer (Dench), a sexy Vogue journalist (Hudson), a woman from his past (Fergie) and his loving mother (Loren).

Marshall directs exactly as he did Chicago, putting the musical numbers on stage as surrealistic, introspective flights of fancy contrasted against the realistic scenes at Cinecitta studios and a seaside resort in 1965 Italy. This allows each actor to create two versions of their character: the purely dramatic one and a more colourful song-and-dance incarnation. This adds terrific insight into the characters and allows the cast to really go for broke.

And while the songs aren't showstoppers, they're at least performed with full-voiced passion. All of the actors have solos, and most enjoyable number is Hudson's go-go catwalk scene, which bursts with glittery energy. Dench gets a superb cabaret piece, and Cruz is fiercely sexy in hers. But it's Cotillard who nails all her scenes to perfection. She gets the two best numbers, including a raucous and bitter striptease, and also has the film's most complex character.

At the centre is Day-Lewis, gleefully channelling both Marcello Mastroianni (who played the role in 8 1/2) and Fellini himself. He throws himself into the role physically, taking us backstage to see both the creative process and the circus that surrounds the industry. Plus a strong comment on gender politics in a country ruled by men who are ruled by their women. And if the film as a whole feels cold and unmoving, without much of a message, it also has an enjoyably freewheeling tone. And it goes without saying that Fellini's original is still the masterpiece.



Nine

Facts and Figures

Genre: Musical

Run time: 118 mins

In Theaters: Friday 25th December 2009

Box Office USA: $19.6M

Distributed by: The Weinstein Co.

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 37%
Fresh: 72 Rotten: 123

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: Puppa Armbruster as Lilo, Sandra Atia as Susi, Ulrich Beiger as Hubert, Lilos Vater, Astrid Boner as Susis Mutter, Siggi Buchner as Mann auf Party, Kurt Bülau as Herr Klassmann, Marianne Dupont as Claudia, Flori Endlicher as Henschel, Jürgen Feindt as Otto, Katjas Vater, Walter Feuchtenberg as Polizeimeister Eckart, Angelika Hefner as Mädchen auf Feier, Gina Janssen as Petra Klassmann, Uschi Karnat as Elke Parsberg, Carina Kreisch as Schülerin, Ruth Küllenberg as Frau Klassmann, Heiner Lauterbach as Paul Bellmann, Rosl Mayr as Wirtin, Claus Obalski as Trauzeuge, Ursula Reit as Lilos Mutter, Ursula Maria Schaefer as Freundin von Lilo, Werner Singh as Mick, Uli Steigberg as 2. Polizist, Christine Szenetra as Katja, Claus Tinney as Wolfgang Ströhmeyer, Dagobert Walter as Horst, Elisabeth Welz as Selma, Katjas Mutter

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.