Rafa Sales Ross (Sight & Sound, i_D, BFI, Total Film, Little White Lies) and Marshall Shaffer (Slant Magazine, Decider, /Film, Marshall at the Movies Substack) join Flixwatcher to review Rafa’s choice Nine Days.
Nine Days (2020) is a fantasy drama written and directed by Edson Oda. It explores themes of the meaning of life, existentialism, morality and spirituality. It stars Winston Duke as Will, a sombre analyst who interviews souls to see if they pass a test to go and become humans. The period of testing lasts nine days, if they are not selected they will cease to exist.
Among the souls being interviewed for selection are Zazie Beetz as Emma, Tony Hale as Alexander and Bill Skarsgård as Kane. Will is frequently visited by Benedict Wong’s Kyo, a supervisor but also friend who has never been human.
Nine Days was unfortunately a victim of the pandemic, it was partially released in the US and it’s themes of life, death and suicide was a hard sell for the post-pandemic viewing appetites. The character of Will was inspired by Edson’s uncle who died by suicide and one of the one of the selected souls who Will has chosen takes her own life.
Recommendability for Nine Days was mixed, mainly due to the themes on life and death, however if you are willing to take a chance you will be richly rewarded with a complex and beautiful film. Strong ratings for engagement and small screen give an impressive overall score of 4.13.
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