Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017) - Film review by KadmonÓrbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)
image © Mono Films & Cactus Flower & Movistar + & Órbita 9 Films

The Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 (2017) is a futuristic sci-fi thriller film. The movie was reviewed by Kadmon

Product: Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

Original title: Órbita 9, English title: Orbiter 9

Series: -

Setting: future Earth

Product type: Film, Genre: futuristic sci-fi thriller, Style: sci-fi, thriller, futuristic

Release: 2017.04.07

Reviewer: Kadmon, Type: Male, 40s, Preferences: Immersive, logical story, consistent setting, prefers surprises to spoilers, prefers establishing elements before referencing them

Watched: very recent (2021.02), first time

Rating: Weak (2- out of 3 points), Enjoyment: Average (2 out of 3 points)

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This is my review of Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, a futuristic sci-fi thriller movie from 2017. It's about a girl living alone on a spaceship, meeting another human for the first time. The Orbiter 9 film is interesting, I recommend it to fans of the genre.

If you'd like to be surprised by the Orbiter 9 film, I don't recommend you to watch the trailer beyond 0:40, because it gives away too much of the plot. It basically provides a summary of the film, up to the ending scene, it's only the very end we are not shown.

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Review (spoiler-free) - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

I didn't know anything about Orbiter 9, before I started to watch it. I didn't watch the trailer.

The Orbiter 9 movie about a girl living alone on a spaceship, meeting another human for the first time.

The story is good. It's mostly consistent, although there's a part in the second half that doesn't really fit in. There are no serious internal logical problems. The ending is ambigious, and I've found that as the weakest part of the story.

The cinematography is good. It has nice visuals. I really liked the futuristic vistas. The only thing I didn't like is that everything was dark. There was only one scene in bright daylight that was properly visible, but even the rest of the daylight shots were gloomy.

The characters are good. The actors portray them fine. The girl (Clara Lago) looks innocent and immaculate, she was believably naive as someone who grew up alone in a spaceship. She also looks charming. She was a really good choice from the creators.

The music (by Federico Jusid) is good, mostly ambient, not very noticable, but not distracting either.

Orbiter 9 is an interesting futuristic sci-fi thriller, I think fans of the genre might enjoy it.

My experience

I was mostly satisfied with Orbiter 9 (2017), except for the last quarter.

Rating: Weak (2- out of 3 points). Orbiter 9 is a well-made film, but it's not exciting. The ending is not satisfying.

Enjoyment: Average (2 out of 3 points). Orbiter 9 is interesting, I mostly liked it.

Rewatchability: I'm not sure. I think it's mostly the surprise of the story that makes you feel interested, but if you liked to watch it for the first time, you might like to watch it multiple times.

Chance of watching it again: There's a chance. Now that I know the story, there's probably no need to watch it again, but I liked it enough that I might watch it in the right circustances.

Chance of watching a sequel: High. I'd sure watch it.

Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017) - Film review by KadmonÓrbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)
image © Mono Films & Cactus Flower & Movistar + & Órbita 9 Films

Will you enjoy this?

If you like mystery or thriller movies, you might like Orbiter 9.

If you like action thriller movies (Blade Runner, Minority Report), you might like the film, although there are not many action scenes in the Orbiter 9 movie.

If you prefer romance movies, you might like this, because on the surface, Orbiter 9 looks like a romance story. However, make sure you are ready for some darker themes.

If you don't understand Spanish and you hate reading subtitles, Orbiter 9 is not the movie for you at the moment. I still hope there'll be an English dub soon.

If you hate stories about unethical treatment, taking advantage of women, forcing women to carry through their pregnancy, then forcing them to bring up their child alone, you should probably avoid Orbiter 9.

Watching for plot points

If you are interested in futuristic stories, I think it's worth watching the Orbiter 9 movie for the plot points.

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Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017) - Film review by KadmonÓrbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)
image © Mono Films & Cactus Flower & Movistar + & Órbita 9 Films

Review with spoilers - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

I liked the Orbiter 9 movie.

I don't think the action scenes in the second half fit the rest of the movie, especially as the protagonists are not trained action heroes, yet they manage to get out of every situation.


The cover of the movie is okay, it doesn't say much, but it doesn't spoil the movie.

The trailer

The trailer is basically a substitute for watching a plot synopsys for the movie.

If you prefer spoilers, it's a great trailer for the Orbiter 9 film. If you prefer to avoid spoilers, it will ruin the movie for you.

Promise of the first scene

The girl living on a spaceship meets another human. This is a very promising start. It reminds me of The Human Operators, that's another story I liked.

Execution: Wow, the story steered quickly away from the space adventure I was prepared for, but I wasn't disappointed.

Plot summary / Synopsis

There's a girl (Clara Lago as Helena) living alone on a spaceship (Orbiter 9). There was a malfunction three years ago, causing a shortage of air supply, and her parents committed suicide, so there would be enough air for her to reach their destination, that's still another fifteen or so years away. Finally a maintenance ship reaches her ship, and an engineer (Álex González as Alex) enters to make the repairs. As she is alone, and afraid that she won't see another human for a long time, the girl seduces him. The engineer takes advantage of the situation, and they make love. When the repairs are done, the engineer leaves.

The engineer gets out of the bunker that holds the girl on Earth, in a simulated reality. It is revealed that scientists are experimenting on how do people react to isolation, so they will be more prepared to handle an actual space flight. The engineer meets with the leading scientist (Andrés Parra as Hugo).

The engineer visits his therapist (Belén Rueda as Silvia), as he is conflicted by his feelings towards the girl. Then the engineer suddenly gets back into the bunker, and gets the girl out. He manipulates the computer so they won't notice this at the control. He hides the girl in his apartment, and introduces her to the world. They act like they are a couple.

While the girl is alone, she finds the documents to the experiment, with the address of her parents, who are actually alive, they just left the bunker. She visits them, but they are not actually related to her, they were just scientists, who were part of the program. The girl, just like the others in the experiment, is a clone. They report her, so the girl escapes.

The therapist of the engineer is sympathetic towards them, so she offers to hide them. The leading scientist and some hitman search the home of the engineer, and find the connection to the therapist. They assault the place, killing the therapist, and capturing the girl. They intend to kill the girl. She is revealed to have medical conditions that prevent her from living outside of the bunker. She asks to be taken back to the bunker, but they tell her that now that she is exposed to the outside world, she is no use to them. When they find it out that she is pregnant, they change their mind.

Then we see a little girl emerging from a bunker, probably for the first time. (According to WikiPedia this girl is intended to be the daughter of the engineer and the girl, and we are now a decade later, but there's no indication of this.)

The setting

The setting is the future of Earth. I assume it's sometimes in the mid-21th century. The seas are polluted and acidic.

They don't seem to have any technology that would be extraordinary in current times.

Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017) - Film review by KadmonÓrbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)
image © Mono Films & Cactus Flower & Movistar + & Órbita 9 Films

The message of the story

I'm not sure there's one. "People can be cruel in the name of science"? "It's okay to force yourself on an innocent girl, if your intentions are good and you are also good looking"?

The structure of the story

The scenes of the Orbiter 9 film are played in sequence, following the same storyline. There's a time jump near the end, although it's not entirely clear.

It has the usual arc of the dramatic structure - beginning, action, and a kind of resolution ending apruptly before things are resolved.

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Things I liked

  • I liked the look of the setting.

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How does it compare to the other works of the creators?

From the writer/director (Hatem Khraiche), I've only seen one film that he has written, The Returned. I have to admit I don't remember much of that movie, but according to my rating, it was similar to Orbiter 9.

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Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017) - Film review by KadmonÓrbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)
image © Mono Films & Cactus Flower & Movistar + & Órbita 9 Films

Problems with the story - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

I mostly liked the story, I didn't find problems that would have prevented me from enjoying Orbiter 9.

Problematic elements

The maintenance trip: First, unless it was a vital part of the experiment, the girl could have been put to sleep for the duration of the repairs. The computer could just tell the girl they are going though a zone in space with heavy neutron radiation, so she has to close herself in a safe space, and sleep through the dangerous part. That way they could have spared themselves the whole trouble. If they did want to test her reaction to a human being, they could have sent anyone else, who is a non-heterosexual male. A female or a homosexual male would have provided them with the same contact exchange, without the danger of getting into a relationship.

The conflicts of the engineer: As the girl didn't have any contact with any males before, and he was the first living person she has seen in three years, she was an easy victim to fall prey to feeling attraction towards the engineer. It was really unprofessional of the engineer to let into the desires of the girl. If this maintenance trip was not unique, he could probably even expect this. I would have like to see a little more consulting about the therapist about the morals and possible consequences of this. Basically, he takes advantage of the girl, then he rescues her, so she could be his female pet. I don't think this is ethical.

Sudden decision: When the engineer decides to get the girl out, it's very sudden. There could have been a little more preparation for this. Talking about the therapist, or his friend, so we could see how he reached this point.

Reactions to the real world: I know that the movie doesn't simulate reality, but the girl should act a lot more awkwardly when taken out of her simulator. She doesn't know how to use technology. She would constantly feel the need to give commands to the AI system. Three years alone would make her the centre of her own world, and reacting to the needs of others would be hard for her. Even smiling is something that could be hard, as she probably didn't spend her days smiling for herself, so she'll need to learn doing that again. I also think that she would find the crowded subway trains unbearable, due to the closeness of other people.

Action scene: The scene with the killing of the therapist was stupid, and the characters only acted in ways to forward the plot. Why would the evil guys ask to show her the booth where she have the patients sit? If they really want to see where she works, they would have asked to see where it's her seat. Then, when they get there, they ask her to switch on the system. Why would they ask for this? Does the evil guys know there's a face recognition software on the other side? Then, as the facial recognition software only works if there's a face, the engineer and the girl should have just hide behind something, or turn their backs. When the evil guys started to get suspicious, if they were ready to shoot the psychiatrist, they should have been also ready to just break the glass. That would have cleared the situation a lot sooner.

Hugo, the killer: I know scientists can be sometimes cold and ruthless, but I find it extremely uncharacteristic of Hugo to be able to kill people in cold blood. It's especially strange, as the ending shows him like he is a good person. Also, it makes it look like the world is more savage and violent than it looks like.

Killing the girl: They decide to kill the girl, because she is no use to them. I find this really strange, disturbing, and it shows me a lack of imagination. She is a human person, who is hidden from the authorities. There would be plenty of ways to experiment on her until she expires, killing her would be a wasted opportunity.

The ending: The ending is not clear. According to WikiPedia, it's the daughter of the engineer and the girl we see, who is greeted by the leader of the program, while the first spaceship is being launched. All I've seen is that a girl is let out of a simulator, without any explanation, and I didn't even recognize the leader of the program, although that might as well be him after a couple of decades.

Sad ending: Basically, the story is about an innocent girl, who was taken advantage of, then got pregnant. Then she was either forced to live with the man who took advantage of her, or she was forced to bring up her child alone, and neither is fine by me. After she has found out about her situation, the years she had to spend inside the bunker must have taken a heavy psychological toll on her. If the engineer was also imprisoned with her, he probably also gone mad by the end. But all of this is hidden in the background in the final scene, while we watch the leading scientist, who almost killed her, smiles on the child they forced to live underground. I would have preferred if they focused a bit more on these aspects.

Unanswered questions


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Possibilities of improvement

The story is a bit too long for its content. Probably an hour would be a fine length for it.

  • Add more dialogue to the engineer when he is at the therapist. He should tell about how conflicted he feels because he took advantage of an innocent girl.
  • Re-edit the part where they kill the psychiatrist to make more sense. Hugo shouldn't kill anybody.
  • Or just cut those action scenes altogether, and let the girl get back the scientists because her medical conditions make her unable to live outside of the bunker.

How it could have been better?


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Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017) - Film review by KadmonÓrbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)
image © Mono Films & Cactus Flower & Movistar + & Órbita 9 Films

Uses for the film - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)


  • Scientists isolate people to live alone to experiment on them.


  • The outside shots of the city could be used to depict near future cities.
  • The simulator scenes could be used to show the inside of a spaceship.

Scenarios - Role-playing game


Scenarios - Wargame

  • There are defenders on a border, who has to examine transports passing through. The attacker has transports with humans hidden in the cargo. The attacker has to break through and leave the playing area. The defender sets up the playing area, and chooses one edge of the playing area as the starting zone of the attacker. Set up the playing area with barriers that leave only one choke point free. The barriers can be broken through by the transports, but that damages or slows them. Deploy the defending forces anywhere on the playing area. The defenders have medium armour and weapons. There might be some heavy weapons in fixed places and limited firing arc, but those are there to force the transports to go through the checkpoint, otherwise the game would end quickly. The attackers have only light weapons, and multiple transports. Their weapons allow them to threaten or suppress the defenders, but it's not enough to easily defeat them. There are as many important humans as there are transports, but all of them can be put into the same transport vehicle. Write it down how many people are in which transport. The attacker decides how many transports they deploy in the first round, at the edge of their starting zone. At the beginning of every turn the attacker can deploy any further vehicle. If the vehicle gets wrecked, the attackers and the important people can get out, and they can get on board of another vehicle. The attacker wins if all of the important people get out of the playing area opposite of their starting zone in the transport vehicles. The defender wins if they prevent at least half of them from leaving. It's a draw if at least half of them leave, or if all of them leave, but they are not in transports.

Miniatures - 1/50-1/60 (28-32mm scale)

Civilians: Modern human-sized human civilians.

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Similar stories - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

Short story

A. E. van Vogt & Harlan Ellison: The Human Operators (1971): A man living alone on a spaceship meets a woman for the first time.


Moon (2009): A man living alone on a Moon base realises he is living in a simulated reality (charade), and gets out of it. He is also a clone. Moon is a better film.

Passengers (2016): A man wakes up alone from hypersleep on a spaceship. He wakes up a good looking woman, so he could force her into a romantic relationship. This is supposed to be a romantic movie.

The Island (2005): An ordinary man realises that he is living in a simulated reality (charade), and gets out of it. He is also a clone.

Movies - simulated reality

Dark City (1998): An ordinary man realises that he is living in a simulated reality (engineered reality), and gets out of it.

Freaks – Du bist eine von uns / Freaks: You're One of Us (2020): An ordinary woman realises that he is living in a simulated reality (charade), and gets out of it.

Matrix (1999): An ordinary man realises that he is living in a simulated reality (virtual reality), and gets rescued to get out of it.

The Truman Show (1998): An ordinary man realises that he is living in a simulated reality (charade), and gets out of it. It's a comedy.

Movies - simulated space travel

400 Days (2015): A group of people are put in a simulation of space travel on Earth, when something happens to the outside world.

Capricorn One (1978): Astronauts are forced to take part in a fake space travel to Mars.

TV series

Ascension (2014): A group of people are on a space ship. They find it out it's a simulation.

Moonbase 8 (2020): A group of people simulate the life on a Moon base on Earth. It's a comedy.

The Outer Limits: The Human Operators (1999): A man living alone on a spaceship meets a woman for the first time. Based on The Human Operators (1971) short story.

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Frequently asked questions - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

Will the Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 movie be available with English audio dub?

Currently (2021.06.26) Orbiter 9 is not available with English audio dub, just English subtitles. Although this is not an action movie, so you'll have plenty of time to read the subtitles, I find it strange they didn't make an English dub yet. If you have to read the subtitles, it takes away from the work of the actors. This is especially true for Clara Lago, who is really expressive in her role, and that might be lost if you watch the text instead of her.

Is the Orbiter 9 film based on a book or comics?

No, Orbiter 9 is not based on either books or comics.

Is there a post credit scene in Orbiter 9?

No, there's no post credit scene in Orbiter 9.

Where can I watch Orbiter 9 online? Is Orbiter 9 available on Netflix? Is Orbiter 9 on Amazon?

As of 2021.06.26, Orbiter 9 is on Amazon Prime, Netflix.

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Resources - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)


IMDB: Órbita 9 (2017): Database article.

WikiPedia: Orbiter 9: Database article.

Letterboxd: Orbiter 9 2017 ‘Órbita 9’: Database article.

Rotten Tomatoes: Orbiter 9: Database article.

Reviews with no spoilers - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 film (2017)

: Review video about the Orbiter 9 film with no spoilers.¤

Reviews with no spoilers - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 film (2017) - Armenian

panza (on steemit): Orbiter 9, 2017 (in Armenian): Review article about the Orbiter 9 film with no spoilers, in Armenian.

English version by Google Translate

Reviews with no spoilers - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 film (2017) - Turkish

Varlık Ergen (for Science Fiction Club): An Imaginary Life: Orbiter 9 (in Turkish): Review article about the Space Sweepers film with no spoilers, in Turkish.Ł

English version by Google Translate

Reviews with spoilers - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 film (2017)

: Review article of the Orbiter 9 movie, with spoilers. Includes a very detailed plot summary.¤

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Buying the product - Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9, movie (2017)

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Have you seen the Órbita 9 / Orbiter 9 film? How do you like the movie? Would you recommend it to others? Do you know reviews or resources you'd like to add? What further thoughts do you have about it? Tell your opinion in the comments!


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