Filmmaker and artist Matthew Barney collaborated with his wife, noted musician Björk, for this ambitious experimental feature. Aboard a Japanese fishing vessel named the Nisshin Maru, a crew of laborers constructs "the Field," a sculptural mold in the shape of an oval that is filled with melted petroleum jelly. As the crew slaves over the project, a man and woman (played by Barney and Björk) are brought on board, and while the ship sets sail the couple prepare to be married in a traditional Japanese ceremony. As the pair are about to be wed, the captain of the Nisshin Maru (Susil Osoma) relates the history of his ship to them. That night, a massive storm at sea disturbs "the Field," and the petroleum jelly floods the room where the newlyweds are staying, forcing them to tear away their outer shells and reveal the animals which lurk within in order to survive. Drawing Restraint 9 was one of Matthew Barney's first major works after completing his widely acclaimed five-film series The Cremaster Cycle.
by Mark Deming synopsis