He casts some big names like Taylor Swift and Jennifer Hudson, and fills it out with lesser-known performers, as well as an enchanting newcomer named Francesca Hayward, a principal ballerina at the Royal Ballet, who plays "Victoria," the wide-eyed innocent cat thrust into a strange new world. Something as unapologetically theatrical as Cats was always going to be hard to film. In the opening sequence, Victoria, abandoned by her owners, is taken under the collective wing of the gang of street cats known as "Jellicle cats." Cats the movie is a slick, computer-enhanced celeb-fest with meticulously choreographed set-pieces taking place in a version of London that sits … Some hit songs like Magical Mr Mistoffelees, The Old Gumbie Cat and The Rum Tum Tugger were butchered. Director Tom Hooper’s movie is a huge failure because he’s completely abandoned the fundamentals of what made “Cats” a terrific show: sublime music, captivating dance and … Over all of this jazz-hands talent-show activity looms the there-and-not-there Macavity (Idris Elba), perched on the tops of buildings like an ominous bat-signal. (I saw Betty Buckley do it, and the entire audience practically seized up when she hit those notes on "Tooouch meeeeee!"). Eliot had very strong feelings about). Cats was theatrically released in the United Kingdom and the United States on 20 December 2019, by Universal Pictures. Cats movie review – Ludicrous, pointless and quite frankly – simply not good enough ... Cats Review. Hudson's Grizabella is pissed when she sings that. Screenshot via Twitter Show More Show Less 12 of 16 This image released by Universal Pictures shows Taylor Swift as Bombalurina in a scene from "Cats." Richard Lawson is Vanity Fair’s chief critic. But the song is about the music, not the words: it's written for a major voice, with its slow build and thrilling finish. If you go back and watch musicals in the 1930s, it's instantly clear how much we have lost. That's a pro.). Get the freshest reviews, news, and more delivered right to your inbox! A far cry from The Waste Land, almost 20 years before, Eliot's poems are sweet and sneakily profound, detailing different kinds of cats, their behaviors, personalities, and mysterious self-involvement. The review embargo for the upcoming movie adaptation of Cats, directed by Tom Hooper, lifted on Wednesday night and critics all across the internet have been coughing up furballs.. The internet was immediately perplexed when the Cats trailer premiered in July, and now that people have seen it, it doesn't appear reception has warmed at all. Cats is exactly as crazy as you thought it would be: Review By Leah Greenblatt December 18, 2019 at 07:00 PM EST There are all these dance numbers in "Cats," and Hooper spends so much time cutting around, changing angles, flying up to the ceiling, manipulating the images. "Cats" has a lot of issues, issues also present in the theatrical production (which didn't seem to matter to the audiences who flocked to it for 18 years). "Cats" suffers from a problem common in contemporary filmed musicals. The musical doesn't trust the audience, doesn't trust that the dancing in and of itself is exciting enough to hold our interest. theater. By creating an account, you agree to the Privacy Policy Movie Reviews Cats Review: Ignore the Haters, Enjoy the Music and Dancing If you liked Cats the musical, you will like the film, the scathing reviews are just bullies piling on. (A nice callback: Judi Dench was cast in the original London production, in the dual role of Grizabella and Jennyanydots. There are all these dance numbers in "Cats," and Hooper spends so much time cutting around, changing angles, flying up to the ceiling, manipulating the images. Many of the cats do their number and are never seen again. Taylor Swift plays Bombalurina, Macavity's gun moll sidekick. Its elements are gathered and chosen and crafted attentively. Performances, unsettling special effects and a plot that makes zero sense have all been raised as the film's worst points. "Jennyanydots" (Rebel Wilson) is a lazy tabby who wreaks havoc at night. Hudson makes sense of her character, personalizes the character, and sings the hell out of the song, all while wearing a cat suit. Sheila O'Malley received a BFA in Theatre from the University of Rhode Island and a Master's in Acting from the Actors Studio MFA Program. Sidney Poitier’s 7 Most Memorable Performances, All Harry Potter Movies Ranked Worst to Best by Tomatometer. Violence. He ties up other cats and threatens to … When you notice a cat in profound meditation,The reason, I tell you, is always the same:His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplationOf the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name. Cats movie reviews & Metacritic score: Blanket is an indoor cat who is too afraid to leave his apartment. They wouldn't last five minutes! Eliot published a book called Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats, filled with poems he had written about cats to amuse his godchildren. and the Terms and Policies, Copyright © Fandango. Tom Hooper ("Les Miserables," "The King's Speech") has brought "Cats" to the screen, not doing much to it (what's to be done, really? Nobody saw the smash hit coming. The takes are long. Attention, moviegoers searching for the worst movie of the year: We have a late-breaking winner. As of Friday evening, Cats had achieved a score of 20 per cent on the movie-review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, which offered this synposis: "Despite its fur-midable cast, this Cats adaptation is a clawful mistake that will leave most viewers begging to be put out of their mew-sery." The musical doesn't trust the audience, doesn't trust that the dancing in and of itself is exciting enough to hold our interest. Rated PG After the release of the first Cats trailer in July, most fans assumed the reaction to the live-action remake would be bad. They sing a song explaining "Jellicle cats," but since the lyrics are almost totally incomprehensible during all the group numbers (a problem throughout, and it's inexcusable), it's hard to get a line on what is going on. 13 IMAGES. Eliot. Cats may very well be the most unique film of the year, certainly released by a major studio, and you'll love it and hate it but you sure won't forget it. The camera follows them. You're denied the sense of sustained movement, denied the simple pleasure of watching dancers dance. The adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's classic musical is Oscar-winner Tom Hooper's second foray into the genre, after 2012's Les Miserables. The structure of Cats is basically a talent show for cats, where the prize is a trip to the "Heavyside Layer" (i.e. If you're not familiar with the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, Cats is based on Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats by T.S. "Cats" features grown humans crawling around in furry suits pretending to be cats. There's not nearly enough of that in "Cats," but I enjoyed the film for what it is. Different cats take the spotlight, and perform a number about who they are. But it also should have been about, well, Cats. Andrew Lloyd Webber took these poems, wove them together loosely, initially envisioning it as a concert or a chamber piece. You are allowed to watch Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers create the dance together, in real time. The whimsical collection of T.S. (Watch what she does with "I must wait for the sunrise." Grizabella sings "Memory," a show-stopping song based (loosely), on Eliot's poem Rhapsody on a Windy Night. The first full Cats reviews are in and they are brutal. The Cats movie is about cats, yes. Sign up here. It has no plot. You're denied the sense of sustained movement, denied the simple pleasure of watching dancers dance. The genesis for the movie stretches back to the 1970s when Lloyd Webber began adapting T.S. With this film, Tom Hooper became the third person to direct both a Best Picture Oscar winner and Worst Picture Razzie winner, after Kevin Costner (Dances with Wolves (1990) and The Postman (1997)) and Peter Farrelly (Green Book (2018) and Movie 43 (2013)). ‘Cats’: Film Review Nine may not be enough lives for some of the stars to live down their involvement in this poorly conceived and executed adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit musical. When you notice a cat in profound meditation, In the opening sequence, Victoria, abandoned by her owners, is taken under the collective wing of the gang of street cats known as "Jellicle cats." The musical doesn't trust the audience, doesn't trust that the dancing in and of itself is exciting enough to hold our interest. Cats hits cinemas today, and the majority of reviews for the movie are extremely negative. A sneaky, creepy, conniving cat tries to use magic and sorcery to win a chance at a new life. Grizabella sings "Memory," a show-stopping song based (loosely), on Eliot's poem, "Cats" suffers from a problem common in contemporary filmed musicals. There are some who will find this unbearably silly. The Best Worst Movies Ever Made. ), and over-producing much of it (the sets feel self-consciously referential, almost to the point of irony, but not quite). It's "London's Got Talent" for the feline set. ), The central figure, besides Victoria, is Grizabella (Jennifer Hudson), a bedraggled cat who's the "Delta Dawn" of the cat world, shunned by the rest of the cats for her disreputable past. Cats is the "best worst movie ever made". The story is thin, to say the least. Cats movie review: Two hours of only song and dance After that bonkers trailer, we knew Cats was going to engender some stranger moments. Don't have an account? The following is a review of CATS by my father Wendell, as told to me. Read her answers to our Movie Love Questionnaire here. "Bustopher Jones" (James Corden) is a street cat decked out in tail-coat and spats. Cats review – will haunt viewers for generations No amount of A-list stars can save Tom Hooper’s dire Lloyd Webber adaptation from being a career low for all involved Simran Hans and to receive email from Rotten Tomatoes and Fandango. An older, disgraced cat acknowledges her pain but presses past it anyway -- and, as a result, gains an incredible opportunity. There's almost no conflict. Soundtrack was a mixed bag. "Jennyanydots" (, Over all of this jazz-hands talent-show activity looms the there-and-not-there Macavity (, The central figure, besides Victoria, is Grizabella (Jennifer Hudson), a bedraggled cat who's the "Delta Dawn" of the cat world, shunned by the rest of the cats for her disreputable past. Please enter your email address and we will email you a new password. In fact, Trevor Nunn refused to come on board as director unless Dench was cast. But at the same time it was watchable. Night Stalker: The Hunt for a Serial Killer. How could you predict something like "Cats"' success? The first trailer arrived during this year's San Diego Comic-Con, which was an odd time to debut it. All rights reserved. The movie “Cats” is—forgive the critical jargon—pretty good. 4.5. bad. Forgot your password? The film received negative reviews from … Cats Review: A Tragical Mess of Mistoffelees. They sing a song explaining "Jellicle cats," but since the lyrics are almost totally incomprehensible during all the group numbers (a problem throughout, and it's inexcusable), it's hard to get a line on what is going on. Critic Reviews for Cats The film is flat, without any of the camp, kitsch high energy that characterised the stage show, but its wrongness is never less than mesmerising. It's a song about memory and moonlight and ... honestly, I get a little lost, trying to follow what she's so upset about. You may be able to find the same … Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4.0 "Cats" suffers from a problem common in contemporary filmed musicals. Now, Rotten Tomatoes just revealed how bad it is. And for all of the technical expertise that clearly went into pulling it off, it all feels squandered on a misguided and painfully showy movie. This movie is far from a purrfect adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's hit musical. In 1939, T.S. "Mr. Mistoffelees" (Laurie Davidson) does magic tricks. There are only a couple of sustained shots in "Cats," and they stand out for the pleasure they bring. Hudson does not disappoint, filling the lyrics with rage and pathos. If you go back and watch musicals in the 1930s, it's instantly clear how much we have lost. You couldn't. There's one moment where Hayward pirouettes in a large circle around the room, and the camera follows her, and it's a lyrical moment of graceful fluid movement. If you can overlook the problematic CGI and enjoy the craft of the performances, Cats may be a unique blend of musical and movie. This content is imported from YouTube. Eliot’s “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats” for the stage. At the time of this writing, the film's Rotten Tomatoes score is just 17% after 89 reviews. She's allowed to do the beautiful thing she knows how to do, and we're privileged enough to watch. Cats review: a sinister, all-time disaster from which no one emerges unscathed — Tim Robey (who gave the film zero stars), The Telegraph. It's a resurrection fantasy, a dream of cleansing and purification (all things which T.S. There are all these dance numbers in "Cats," and Hooper spends so much time cutting around, changing angles, flying up to the ceiling, manipulating the images. Reviewers panned the new "Cats" movie. Whether it's the uncanny CGI human/cat-like figures, the inconsistent and distracting scaling and sizing issues, or even the plasticky, garish look of the whole film, Cats is a really unpleasant spectacle. "Heaven"), a place where the chosen cat moves on to the next of their (presumably) nine lives. After a triumphant run in London, it moved to Broadway, where it promptly smashed every record in the book, becoming the fourth-longest running show in Broadway history. You are allowed to watch, Outlines: A Queer Reading of Some Silhouettes, Resident Alien Blends Humor, Heart into Effective Escapism, Jules Goes to Therapy in Her Own Special Episode of Euphoria, HBO's Painting with John is a Magnetic Celebration of Arts and Artists. Cats review – a purr-fectly dreadful hairball of woe 1 / 5 stars 1 out of 5 stars. It was the second Broadway show I saw as a child), but obviously throngs of audiences have thrilled to it. And that it did. "Old Deuteronomy" (Judi Dench) is the wise elder cat, and the master of ceremonies. Dench dropped out at the last minute, after snapping her Achilles tendon. Different cats take the spotlight, and perform a number about who they are. The appeal of the show is somewhat mysterious to me (and I've seen it twice. The actors range from lively to passionate to profound. for some rude and suggestive humor. Embarrassing even. Cats review – … Macavity shows up to wreck everybody else's "act," for no discernible reason (he's got Iago's "motiveless Malignity," to quote Samuel Taylor Coleridge). Cat-astrophic special effects ruin Tom Hooper’s adaptation of the infamous stage musical Cats. "Skimbleshanks" (Steven McRae) commandeers railway cars with the power of his tap-dancing. May 30, 2020 | Full Review… Eliot cat poems from which the script is drawn is no more than a prompt for a series of musical numbers and the feline talent show which ties them all together has a weird conclusion. Her appearance here has a lot of resonance for those who know the history. https://www.buzzfeed.com/kellymartinez/18-funniest-audience-reviews-for-cats I suggest these people never take an acting class or a movement class. It's essentially about a bunch of felines — called Jellicle cats. A resurrection fantasy, a place where the chosen cat moves on to 1970s... 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