‘Nine Days’ delves into the human condition

Category: Movies


The film Nine Days is a psychological/metaphysical drama about life, literally. The story focuses on life before life.

Will (Winston Duke) is in charge of deciding which souls/spirits get to experience life and which ones will be extinct. He lives in a house surrounded by vastness. Nothing is around him except his assistant Kyo (Benedict Wong) who oversees the process. All the lives Will has selected to become human beings are played out on TV monitors in his house and he keeps up with his “people.”

There is one girl he is especially drawn to. Amanda is a gifted violinist and both Will and Kyo enjoy listening to her play. They “see” her life through her eyes, as with all the other selectees. When tragedy happens Will is forced to confront his own demons.

One by one the candidates arrive at his house. Out of them he must select one to fill the vacant spot. The candidates are given nine days to answer questions, observe the people on earth, and experience both the good and bad of the situation in which they find themselves. They are not people yet. They are souls, or spirits. They inhabit a body but have not been born.

As the candidates learn about life and being alive, Will discovers more and more about his own past. He had once been alive, unlike Kyo. One candidate in particular, Emma (Zazie Beetz), brings out emotions in him that he never expected. Emma is unusual. She looks at life differently than the others. You could say she was a “glass half full” kind of girl. She sees happiness when others only see the grim part of being alive.

The film is dark, both in content and cinematography. It is meant to get viewers to look deeper at life itself. How do people confront situations? How do they survive among dissidence? How do relationships play out?

The content in the story can be a bit disturbing so it is not a film for younger viewers. Nine Days is rated R for language. It opens July 30, 2021.

About the Author

Francine Brokaw has been covering all aspects of the entertainment industry for over 25 years. She also writes about products and travel. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as Internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet The World of Entertainment Journalists, is the entertainment correspondent for Good Day Orange County, and has her own TV show, Beyond the Red Carpet, on Village Television in Orange County. She is a longstanding member of the Los Angeles Press Club and the Television Critics Association and is accredited by the MPAA. Follow her on Twitter.