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Nine
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Reviews & Ratings for
Nine More at IMDbPro »

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132 out of 189 people found the following review useful:

I Wanted To Like This Film More Than I Did.

6/10
Author: Matt_Layden from Canada
16 December 2009

Guido Contini, a famous Italian director, is struggling with his next big film. He has no script and no inspiration, but everyone is counting on him. He tries to juggle both his new film, his wife, his mistress, his producer and his muse. Oh yeah, he also talks to his dead mother.

Nine is an ambitious film, I'll give it that. Rob Marshall, the director of the Best Picture winner Chicago serves up a mix bag with Nine. The film feels like Marshall is trying to rekindle the magic he had with Chicago, he comes up short, specifically with the musical numbers. For everything that I liked about it, there were two things I didn't. Nine needs to be more focused and shorter for it to be a film I would recommend.

The film is about film-making, yet the way Marshall presents the film to us is in the style of a stage play. Everything from the set-pieces to lighting screams stage play. It was an interesting touch, but felt out of place because it dealt with the art of film-making so much. The musical numbers, all uninspiring and rather boring, even attest to this. With the exception of Fergie, who gives us the best song and dance number that uses sand in a creative way, all the other numbers are generic and rather 'not good'. When you have a Grammy winner singing a song and then have Kate Hudson sing one, there is a difference, and it is more noticeable than the filmmakers might have wanted.

Nine has a great cast, most of them are Oscar winners too. Daniel Day Lewis, with an amazing Italian accent, is the obvious stand out. He plays sexy and stressed all in one look. Penelope Cruz is the mistress, who has the sexiest scene of this movie, her career and this year. Her work in this film is pretty basic, the other lover who wants to be the one loved. With the exception of DDL, the only other actor that is given any kind of emotional depth is Marion Cotillard. She has to go through the realization that her husband is cheating on her and make the choice to stay or leave. Everyone else is pretty much there to fill up time and sing their one song. Judie Dench is the fashion designer and she plays a motherly figure, whereas Sophia Loren plays his actual mother, well his dead mother, but he still sees and talks to her. Fergie has her one scene in which she steals the show with her tune and then Nicole Kidman turns up at the end and makes you wince with her accent. Don't get me started on Kate Hudson.

The problem is that these are good actors, with just no material to work with. Daniel Day Lewis is great, but he's a hard character to connect with, he's sleeping around with a lot of women, it feels like half the cast. Emotional scenes don't play out as well as they should and the film drags itself to the finish line near the end. I found myself wanting it to end sooner and sooner, but it kept going.

On the plus side, the choreography is great and the cinematography really grabs you, even if it is a little misplace with it's stage feel. The film is well put together and the editing is well done. It weaves it's story in and out of timelines from Guido's life, during the musical numbers. The film isn't bad, but it didn't do anything for me either. Leaving a musical not tapping your toes or even remembering the tunes may be a bad sign. I liked it enough to give it a good rating, the cast and style are good enough for me to do so, but everything else makes me lean on the side of telling you to rent this. It's well made, but has no real heart and the film is a little on the long side, you may be checking your watch.

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106 out of 168 people found the following review useful:

A Hot Mess...But a Mess of Oscar-Worthy Material

6/10
Author: o-donnell_w from United States
9 December 2009

I could honestly say that walking out of "Nine" I felt more conflicted over what I thought of the movie than I have in years. The film can be reviewed in two aspects though, its performances and its story, so I'll dissect those.

Performances: Let me first say that no actress delivered any less than they possibly could, and you could tell that the cast had worked their butts off during production.

The Great- Marion Cotillard in particular delivered what is sure to be one of the most understated performances in recent memory, as well as delivering the two most powerful and emotional numbers in the show. Penelope Cruz was SEXY, and as her character's story was wrapped up she beautifully portrayed a "mistreated mistress," so to speak. Judi Dench was fantastic as the background player in Guido's career, perfectly delivering wit while supporting her friend. Most importantly, these three worked so well because they were interlinked in each other's story, and as a result their plot lines flowed well into each other.

The OK- DDL and Sophia Loren were fine in their parts, simply filling out their roles and not seriously improving on or dragging down the movie in any way.

The Misused- Nicole Kidman, Kate Hudson, and Fergie were all criminally misused, although fantastic when on the screen. All three had stories that didn't synch with the movie, whether they be Kidman (who honestly needed a more fleshed out role that came in contact w/ other characters other than just Guido), Hudson (whose number really felt like it would have made more sense in the beginning of the movie), or Fergie ("Be Italian" felt shoehorned in and disconnected, and would have been a perfect opener or closing number). All three felt particularly disconnected from the film.

I can honestly say that not one of the players in Marshall's cast disappointed, but it was Marshall himself and the messy script (irony!) that jumbled up the movie and left me with a very disjointed, disconnected result. Each scene was Oscar-worthy, but they were only partially threaded together into a cohesive story.

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68 out of 93 people found the following review useful:

Six

6/10
Author: Donald Agustamarian from London, England
1 February 2010

Let me say off the bat that seeing Sophia Loren and Sophia Loren singing gave me a chill. That is quite a bit to get from a film. Chills. I knew I had to forget this was a musical adaptation of 81/2, but I couldn't forget the way I forgot that "Sweet Charity" was a musical remake of "The Nights Of Cabiria". Here the score is iffy and scarce and the story, translated into musical numbers is kind of shallow and, quite honestly, not enough. There are, however, moments to enjoy. The look of it is great, and Marion Cotillard makes something enormous from the little she was given. Penelope Cruz dances an erotic dance and Kate Hudson, well I don't quite know what she was doing. Nicole Kidman is starting to look like a wax work, what a pity! And Judi Dench is always fun. I was reminded she was a sublime Sally Bowles in the first London production of "Cabaret" - Daniel Day Lewis has been one of my favourites for a long time now but here he is far too pale, inside and out. I want to repeat that the whole thing is worth it just to have a glimpse of Sophia Loren singing. So, 6.

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102 out of 170 people found the following review useful:

What is wrong with everyone???

10/10
Author: invinceable08 from United States
31 December 2009

When I first found out that Rob Marshall was going to be making a movie version of Nine I was very excited because I knew he would be the best person to direct it because he could easily relate to the protagonist with his experience as a well known director and a women enthusiast. Also as a director he uses very creative imagery and elaborate sets to tell the story of a very specific situation, instead of just a broad scenario that happens everyday. I particularly love this style because I hate stories that I've already seen and heard a million times.

Because i felt this way about it i was shocked to hear that such a large majority of critic's thought it was so mediocre and I became hesitant to see it in fear of disappointment.

Well, I did see it and let me tell you, there was nothing mediocre about it. It was a phenomenal movie. The dances and songs were beautiful, creative and very well performed. The storyline was very fresh and it kept the viewer interested in what Guido would do next because he was such a dynamic character. The women in his life were perfectly cast and fantastically played, especially Marion Cotillard, whom I had never heard of before this movie; it's fair to say she totally rocked her role instilling in me emotions that I never even knew I had. Penelope was ridiculously sexy yet still made the viewer empathize with her character. Nicole Kidman was great as the self-confident and inspiring muse. Daniel Day-Lewis was very believable in his role as the immature child trapped inside the older man's body named Guido, as his life spins out of control as reality finally begins to catch up with him.

The main problem that critics had with this movie was that it wasn't like Fredrico Fellini's 8 1/2 on which nine was based but they shouldn't be comparing the two. This is a whole new movie and should be viewed for what it is and to me Nine is the most entertaining movie of the year and I am looking forward to seeing it again.

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39 out of 52 people found the following review useful:

Chicago style doesn't work for Italian style

6/10
Author: moviemanMA from Massachusetts
27 February 2010

I was surprised when Rob Marshall's Chicago took home the Oscar for Best Picture. A great movie but not my choice for best of 2002 (that I would award to Gangs of New York). All that aside, Marshall hasn't done much since. Only one movie, Memoirs of a Geisha, which I for some reason have neglected to see (I try to watch films that win for best cinematography). That's all beside the point. In his third film, Marshall goes back to his theatre roots and tackles another musical.

This time he has chosen Nine, a re-imagining of Federico Fellini's classic film 8 1/2. Already I am skeptical of the situation. I am fine with musicals. Some of the best films on celluloid have been musicals. What I have a problem with is the reworking of such a classic film like 8 1/2. It would take a lot of convincing to win me over. Unfortunately, it did not succeed.

Daniel Day-Lewis stars as Guido Contini, an Italian director who is planning on making the most important Italian film ever call Italia. The only problem is he hasn't written a script yet. To guide him he turns to the women in his life. His late mother (Sofia Loren), his wife Marion Cotillard, his mistress (Penelope Cruz), his costume designer and closest friend (Judi Dench), a fashion reporter (Kate Hudson), a childhood temptress Saraghina (Stacey "Fergie" Ferguson) and his leading lady (Nicole Kidman).

Contini tries to escape the pressure looming overhead by the media, his producers, and his cast and crew. He is constantly searching for the answer, bouncing around from one person to another. That's really all there is. He talks to people, sleeps around, and goes into his past.

Right off the bat there is a slight problem. There are too many women! Not just for Contini but for the audience. There are too many big name actresses with almost equal parts. Who is more important? Who should we side with? It seems like he has such a close relationship with some of them and hardly any with others, yet they all practically get the same amount of screen time. They all have at least one song to their own.

That is another problem with the film. The musical aspect is distracting from the story. The music for the most part is average. A few songs like "Be Italian" and the Oscar nominated "Take it All" are very good, but for the most part, it's all bells and whistles. Like he did with Chicago, Marshall takes us from the real world of dialogue to the imaginary world of singing and dancing. My issue with this is that he spends an almost equal amount of time in both places. With Chicago, there was more story divulged in the real world. Nine has too much singing and not enough story telling.

The musical numbers are impressive, in particular the two songs I mentioned. Fergie really flexes the golden pipes with "Be Italian," a fun and sexy number that for me was the highlight of the film. Cotillard's number was also one of the better ones. This was a more emotional struggle and was one of the few numbers I felt really connected with the story. Kidman and Cruz each have decent numbers, and Dench's number is a bit over the top. She is better with the real world scenes.

I guess Marshall tried to replicate what he did with Chicago but came up short. I never was invested with any of the characters and Lewis' performance was not quite what I was looking for. I would have loved to have seen Raul Julia, the original Guido Contini from the first Broadway production, or even Antonio Banderas in the revival. I think someone with a more musical background would have been a more acceptable choice, but nevertheless, Lewis does a fairly decent job.

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53 out of 85 people found the following review useful:

Nine is not your everyday musical

8/10
Author: jgregg42 from United States
26 December 2009

What do I know about musicals? From my limited experience of musicals, ("Singing in the Rain," "Guys and Dolls," "The Blues Brothers" {yes, it is considered a musical comedy} and "Legally Blonde the Musical") here is the basic linear format as I see they are written in — opening dialogue, singing, more dialogue, more singing, even more dialogue and then a grand finale. Then for a week after that, you have the songs stuck in your head. Director Rob Marshall chose not to follow the old standby format through to the end. His actions placed "Nine" in a different category from the standard musical.

The movie focuses on Guido Contini (Daniel Day-Lewis) as a famous movie director in Italy in 1965. He is having troubles developing his next movie. More so, he hasn't written a script. Even more so, he is having trouble even coming up with an idea for his movie. He had successful movies in the years past but now we are watching him struggle after a few major flops.

In his journey to make his next movie, he is having marital problems along with mistress problems. Add in Freudian issues with his deceased mother and his working relationship with his costume designer and his muse. Don't forget to include yet another potential affair outside of the one he is having with his mistress, plus there's the memory of an erotic lady on a beach from his youth (that's seven women total for those of you who are keeping score at home).

You know what is going to make this movie stand out from the crowd? It is the realistic singing by the actors. They are actors first and singers second (except for maybe Fergie who plays the erotic lady from Guido's youth but she didn't say much in the film, come to think of it I think she only sang). Since I don't know much about musicals and even less about how to sing properly, I could grasp the singing. The tunes they sang aren't the kind you are going to be singing on the way home because a lot of the songs were simply narrated lines being sung. When a character wanted to express his or her thoughts, they would sing their lines. Maybe that's what they do in all musicals — like I said my experience here is limited.

The women. Oh, the women. They all performed wonderfully, and I don't just mean the singing. The female cast includes his wife (Marion Cotillard), his mistress (Penelope Cruz), his costume designer (Judi Dench), the woman from his childhood (Fergie), an American fashion designer (Kate Hudson), his muse (Nicole Kidman) and his mother (Sophia Loren). They brought emotion and life to the story through their singing and their lustful yet sensual moves. I would also like to note, as a guy, the women were the reason why I kept my attention focused for almost 2 hours. I don't even watch a football game this intensely.

Should you see this movie? Yes. But, don't go in expecting a musical you can sing along with or a movie that will leave you feeling giddy with love. It dealt with some very real issues about infidelity. I will say this, though, after seeing this movie I do know a little more about musicals. And, that's a good thing.

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122 out of 223 people found the following review useful:

Another excellent adaptation from Rob Marshall

8/10
Author: doubleosix from Hollywood
23 November 2009

The film is beautiful, visually stunning, and exciting, and the cast is remarkable, especially Penelope Cruz (no surprise there), Marion Cotillard (her singing is wonderful), and the gal who blows the doors off -- an unrecognizable (to me, anyhow) Fergie! I was watching the credits to see who the hell played Saraghina, and was stunned to learn it was Stacy Ferguson. Go Fergie! Judi Dench is a smash as well. Nicole Kidman doesn't reveal anything we haven't seen before, but she does bring the large dollop of Movie Star shine for which her role calls. Even Kate Hudson pleases; her 60's go-go dance will inevitably bring comparisons to her mother's "Laugh In" heyday.

Having said all that, I honestly don't know who is the audience for this film. "Nine" was hardly the Broadway smash that "Dreamgirls", or "Chicago" was, and the score is entirely obscure. Additionally, do most people really care about the trials and tribulations of a self-involved, duplicitous 1960's-era Italian filmmaker? Does it matter? Do you have to actually like the protagonist to learn something from his experiences? Box-office-wise, this picture is going to live or die on the reviews, and people's interest in seeing these actresses shine. (I read here that Renee Zellwegger was under consideration for a role in this film... What a disaster that would have been!) And, of course, those who like seeing Daniel Day Lewis stretch new muscles (he chain smokes! He sings!) I enjoyed it very, very much... and now I'm very curious to see what the world thinks of it.

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63 out of 106 people found the following review useful:

Tedious, and painful

1/10
Author: andrew cappelletti from United States
8 December 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Lots of money spent giving incredibly beautiful visuals with some extraordinary performances by a stellar cast, in this monotonous dull and lifeless movie. What a shame. The cast obviously poured their hearts out, and worked their asses off. The production design and cinematography are award worthy. The directing is absolutely horrendous. Atrocious. Horrible. Hey Rob, where you put the camera is really important. I couldn't see inside any of these characters! I never felt sympathetic, empathetic, or even slightly connected to any of these characters. Sad, cause the actors brought it. The movie never showed it to the audience. When Guido (Daniel Day-Lewis) kneels at his Mother's (Sophia Loren) feet and admits his faults, we see his hair back-lit. I will bet had the camera actually looked into his eyes we might have had something there. One hour and forty five minutes into the movie, the conflict with the wife happened. Finally some real drama. Had that been the first scene I might have decided to care about this man's journey. Kate Hudson's number was the highlight of the film, although completely disconnected from the story. But then again, everything is disconnected. And there really is no story. And making a film with an Italian sensibility in the English language is probably an impossibility. Remember when they dubbed "La Vita e Bella" into English? That, like Fellini's work was beautiful in Italian. It sucked in English. I say, leave the making of Italian films to Italian filmmakers. Uhhhgggg. Thanks for the free screening, But I sincerely wish I could have those two hours back.

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26 out of 41 people found the following review useful:

I seem to not get what everyone else does

1/10
Author: red_jacket0707 from United Kingdom
16 January 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

What is the point of making a film like this? A pretentious film director is uninspired to write a decent film, and ultimately fails.

How clever and ironic that the film itself mirrors this!

In order to find inspiration, he looks to the women in his life, while they spring into song wearing basques and corsets.

All the songs sound the same.

Nothing happens.

The end.

I'm sticking my neck out here. I'll be chastised for criticising such a successful Broadway musical, with such a great cast. Don't get me wrong - the 1 star for this film is solely for Day Lewis - the man can act.

It looks fairly nice as well It doesn't stop this film being pointless, pretentious, nauseous drivel.

I can't remember any of the songs from the film, because they are completely dull, lifeless, pointless songs.

1/10 - AVOID. (Even though you'll all disagree with me - I stand by my opinion!)

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34 out of 57 people found the following review useful:

Ridiculous

1/10
Author: felipe-cotta from Brazil
18 February 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is, easily, one of the worst movies I've ever seen. Really... what's with all this great cast to a plot that doesn't exist? The movie deals with the drama of a filmmaker who ran out of ideas for his next movie. Well, I think "Nine" is this film. There's no story, no script, no ideas. It's a silly and presumptuous musical that makes you leave the movie theater feeling ashamed. Why did Kate Hudson say "yes" to this part? She's totally out of context here, she doesn't even know what she's doing. Her musical performance is pitiful and I almost prayed it ended as quick as it could. As for the songs... all awful. "Cinema Italiano" makes you feel you're being stabbed in the ears. In general, all songs are bad, except for the one that's sung by Luisa. Penelope Cruz and Sophia Loren make good appearances, but they're both too good to be here. This movie does not deserve them. Or Judi Dench. Or Nicole Kidman (by the way, what happened to her lips???).

I left the movies feeling like an idiot. This movie is an offense.

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