Was 2019’s “Cats” a Catastrophe?
By Catherine Brown Photo & Business Editor, and Amelia Spence Content & Publishing Editor
Was 2019’s controversial “Cats” a cinematic masterpiece or a nightmarish disaster? Bored in lockdown, two journalists have watched the film and come away with differing opinions.
Let me start by saying if you haven’t seen “Cats” yet, save your time and innocence and don’t watch it. It is the worst movie I have ever seen.
Since the movie came out last year, I’ve never had the desire to watch it. But a few weeks ago, I was unwillingly forced to watch with my family.
You’d think a movie with an all-star cast would be really great, but boy would you be wrong. First of all, there is no demographic this movie was made for. They casted Judi Dench, Jason Derulo, and James Corden all in the same movie.
Though many people might argue the worst part of the movie is the CGI, I would disagree. Don’t get me wrong, the CGI live-action “digital fur technology” mixture is terrible. Whoever made the movie clearly has never seen a real cat before.
The plot of the movie is a bunch of horny cats who sing about how they want to die and later get drugged by Taylor Swift. Although that might sound funny, watching it slowly for almost two hours is torture.
On top of the list of terrible things about this movie, the cats constantly change size and are never proportional, which is incredibly distracting.
The reason the Broadway musical worked was because it makes sense to see people in cat costumes. But when you’re sitting in a theater or at home, and the cats look as scary as they do, it’s horrifying.
Words can barely touch the surface on how bad this movie is. If you don’t trust me on this, read any other review written about it. I’ve never seen a movie with so many bad reviews.
I’ll admit the initial reason I even watched “Cats” was because I thought it was going to be bad. I’d heard the mixed reviews and read the scathing articles, which made me excited to sit back and watch the nightmare unfurl before my eyes.
So imagine my disappointment when thirty minutes into the movie, I was yet to be horrified. Where was the haphazard, nonsensical hallucination I’d been promised? All I’d seen so far was an array of thoroughly enjoyable dance numbers and bopping Broadway songs (I sing that song about Jellicle cats on a daily basis), interspersed with A-listers attempting British accents with varying levels of success. Yes, the digital editing used to make the actors look like cats is a tad off-putting- I’m not going to pretend I haven’t had at least one nightmare featuring James Corden as Bustopher Jones. But after five minutes of watching the cast parade around on the screen, I quickly forgot my initial discomfort at seeing the fur-clad characters and got into it.
Was “Cats:” a great movie? No, not really. But was it as bad as everyone said it was? No, not at all! In fact, the only thing I didn’t like about “Cats” was seeing how mundane it really was. After reading review upon review promising me the cinematic equivalent of a psychedelic experience, I was expecting absurdity of monumental proportions, which “Cats” just didn’t have. In the end, I enjoyed all of the dancing and singing quite a bit, and would recommend it to anyone with two hours to kill and low expectations.