THE 9TH LIFE OF LOUIS DRAX Coma Police
released 9 sePteMber 15 | 108 minutes
Director alexandre aja Cast Jamie dornan, aiden longworth, sarah gadon
Much like Pan’s Labyrinth, this adaptation of a book by Liz Jensen uses fantasy as deception, masking what is a dark and adult film underneath childlike whimsy.
It follows, of course, Louis Drax (Aiden Longworth), a disturbed boy whose history of curious mishaps has led to him falling off a cliff during a family picnic. Or was he pushed? Either way, he lands in the fantastical world of a coma, where he makes friends with a sea creature, and attempts to take down his doctor (Jamie Dornan), who’s become romantically involved with his mother Natalie (Sarah Gadon). Louis’s father (Aaron Paul), meanwhile, has gone missing.
The mystery unravels with the pace of a dream, not only surreally bleeding between the worlds of reality and coma, but capturing adulthood as seen by a child. This works – mostly – thanks to director Alexandre Aja, who has a gift for hypnotic visuals and imaginative storytelling. But it’s Longworth’s performance as Drax that really sells it; he has the sort of cheek and charm that can power through even the most jarring of scenes. The 9th Life doesn’t always click, but when it does it’s fascinating. Stephen Kelly
Filming a silent flashback of Louis’s dad shouting at his mum, Aaron Paul yelled things like, “You have a nice smile!”
Paparazzi Pete stepped on a twig.