19 December 2019 10:45
Holy moly. Every now and then a film comes along that requires a level of strength, courage and, indeed, patience, the likes of which I am simply unequipped for. It is during these harsh and brutal times that we are reminded that the job of a critic isn't all that it's cracked up to be. You take the good with the bad. You do your best to stay open-minded.
But with Tom Hooper's Cats, we are presented with a cinematic undertaking like no other. Indeed, Hooper's film – a noisy, big-screen upgrade of the beloved Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, based on a collection of poetry by TS Eliot – is already something of an internet sensation. The notorious trailer provided enough stunning, meme-worthy moments and hysterical, CGI gifs, to last us a lifetime. From the outset, it looked as though Cats, with its frightening energy, unsettling enthusiasm and bonkers effects, was destined for cinematic infamy. We weren't half wrong.
Existing in a gloomy, neon purgatory of its own ill-advised creation, Hooper's film concerns a beautiful, delicate feline named Victoria (Francesca Hayward) who, after being tossed in pile of alleyway garbage by her cruel owner, is quickly introduced to an underground kitten world, in which a rowdy tribe of 'Jellicle Cats' prepare themselves for a midnight, ritualistic ball. Much like the panic-inducing stage show, Hooper's film seems to take enormous pride in confusing its audience. If you're looking for a clean, crisp and coherent story, you're in the wrong place. Seriously, I've had an easier time filing my tax returns than I have trying to work out just what in the hell is going on in Cats. Please log in or register with Independent.ie for free access to this article. Log In Cats, 2019. Directed by Tom Hooper. Starring James Corden, Judi Dench, Jason Derulo, Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Ian McKellen, Taylor Swift, Rebel Wilson, and Francesca Hayward. In this video review, EJ attempts to break down the insanity that is Cats. Join him as he talks about digital fur technology, the musical numbers, and why was this turned into a movie in the first place. Watch the review below, and be sure to head on over to our YouTube channel for more videos and exclusive content… Cats is set for release on December 20th in the UK and on December 25th in the US and features a cast that includes James Corden, Judi Dench, Jason Derulo, Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Ian McKellen, Taylor Swift, Rebel Wilson and ballet dancer Francesca Hayward.