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Not exactly ground breaking
on 3 January 2003
SW9 is an enjoyable romp through the fringes of the free party scene, populated with characters that come straight out of "The Big Book Of Urban Stereotypes", and it's safe to say that if you liked Human Traffic then this one'll be right up your alley. It's a fair bit darker though, it has to be said, which might not appeal to everyone but personally I felt the film needed a darker twist in order to give it an edge and stop it becoming "Human Traffic part 2". It kind of outstays its welcome by the time the final reel comes round and leans a bit too heavily on the films that have obviously inspired it - namely Human Traffic and Trainspotting - but you could see a lot worse films than this.
There's good use of real Brixton locations, which do the film a lot of favours and always manage to raise a smile when you see somewhere you recognise.
I don't mind the stereotypes or the contrived story, the occasionally underachieving cast, the dialogue that's convinced it's being clever, the script that thinks if you can weave half a dozen stories together you'll have Pulp Fiction.... but what I do mind is that when something says it's a comedy and then doesn't make you laugh even once.... that's not good. That's an Adam Sandler movie.
If you're a big fan of the movie already there's enough on the disc to satisfy you (although a cast/crew commentary would have been a good addition as those involved did seem to be having a good time making it) with a handful of deleted scenes, music videos, a behind the scenes featurette etc. Some input from the cast seems to be missing though, it's obvious that this is the directors baby and all we get are his enthusiastic views on the film, still, we can't have everything.
One very bizarre extra though is the news footage tucked away under the "War Stories" banner. The director was a news cameraman working in places like Bosnia and the former Soviet Union before breaking out into feature films, and here we get a collection of some of his "finest moments", essentially footage of skirmishes and attrocities filmed out in the field on the front line. It's interesting but it's certainly not stuff that'll make you laugh, and it probably ranks as one of the strangest extras I've come across especially when you consider it's on a DVD of a film celebrating underground dance culture.