Description of the Movie "The Nines"

by Toby Welch

"The Nines" premiered in January 2007 at the Sundance Film Festival and was released Aug. 31, 2007, in a limited number of U.S. theaters. "The Nines" is a dramatic psychological thriller written by John August, a frequent screenwriting collaborator with Tim Burton; this movie was August's directorial debut. It is rated R.

Overview of "The Nines"

"The Nines" stars Ryan Reynolds, Hope Davis and Melissa McCarthy. Elle Fanning also makes an appearance. The movie is made up of three loosely intertwined stories, each approximately half an hour long. The three actors play the the main characters in each of the stories.

Part One -- The Prisoner

In the first of the three parts, Ryan Reynolds plays Gary, a struggling actor. Gary goes on a rampage; he torches his ex-girlfriend's clothes, burns down his own house, gets high on drugs and booze and gets in a car accident. Now under house arrest in the home of an out-of-town writer, Gary begins dalliances with Margaret (McCarthy), a publicist and supplier, and Sarah (Davis), a sexually assertive neighbor. Gary begins having hallucinations about different versions of himself as well as the number nine. He finds notes in his handwriting that he doesn't remember making, and he hears voices. Gary sees nines everywhere he looks.

Part Two -- Reality Television

Gavin is a reality TV writer who is struggling to get his pilot made. The show, "Knowing," stars his best friend, Melissa (McCarthy). A network is interested in the show, and Susan, a TV executive, is helping Gavin make it come to fruition. Susan tells Gavin to keep an eye out for nines. Melissa and Gavin have some casting arguments when Gavin needs to replace her with another actress. After a brutal fight, Gavin goes outside to cool off and finds a nine floating above his head, and sevens hovering over everyone else. Gavin has a flashback from part one, a conversation Gary had with Margaret.

Part Three -- Knowing (Spoiler)

Reynolds plays Gabriel, a successful video-game designer, in this third and last story. After a hike, he and his wife, Mary (McCarthy), and their daughter, Noelle (Fanning), find their car battery dead. Gabriel leaves his family with the car and goes for help. He runs into Sierra (Davis), a fellow hiker with questionable motives, who eventually admits she is holding an intervention for him to come home. Gabriel is unclear where home is. He returns to his car after finding a missing Noelle in the woods. Mary later tells Gabriel to go, and he leaves, taking the universe back to nothing.


  • "The Nines (special edition)"; 2008

Photo Credits

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