The characters run the full personality gamut while exterminating machines provide formidable survival challenges. The story also includes some peppering of a fascistic-type government, lead by The Chancellor, who wrestles machine control away from The Scientist in flashbacks about midway through the film. The creative visuals and action present interesting situations as the audience gets a wild, unpredictable ride, which stimulates the senses and probes the intellect with possibilities. Audiences never really have to work throughout the plot or unravel any mysteries. The scientist’s methods or discoveries aren’t revealed in detail, so audiences are basically along for the ride… it’s a fine ride, though.
The full-length commentary track includes Acker, animation director Joe Ksander, head of story Ryan O'Loughlin, and editor Nick Kenway while the original “9” short has an optional commentary by Acker and Ksander. Other bonuses include the animated deleted scenes and a 16-minute “The Long and Short of It” featurette.
The Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack pounds Deborah Lurie’s original music score and the five-minute “Acting Out” featurette showcases the recognizable voice cast. The 13-minute “The Look of 9” featurette comments on the visuals and settings, which evoke amazing details but familiar color schemes and shadowing. The film is presented in widescreen format and includes English, Spanish, and French audio tracks and subtitles.
A must have for anyone with an interest in filmmaking, while general audiences can find themselves entranced within this grim yet amazing world. Focus Features has a great animation start with this film and the Oscar-nominated Coraline. Recommended and rated PG-13 for violence and scary images. Also available on Blu-ray.