Elijah Wood needs to set some limits. I just don't think he should be playing plucky little heroes in quest narratives, especially ones with lovable, puppy-loyal sidekicks who must set out across hostile terrain into the lair of a forbidding enemy. Actually, the problem with wunderkind director Shane Acker's "stitchpunk" animated fantasy "9" isn't so much that it bears a sped-up, dumbed-down resemblance to "The Lord of the Rings," although it does. It's more that Acker's dark and whimsical creation, so clearly in the tradition of his mentor Tim Burton, is wondrous to behold but offers only an indifferent and generic mishmash of quest fantasy and post-apocalyptic science fiction when it comes to story.
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