Monday, December 30, 2013

5th Monday Ugh: Catwoman (2004)

You may have noticed I haven't been keeping up with this blog on a weekly basis; it probably has something to do with some ineffible law of internet thermo-dynamics where everything self-published online prematurely degrades or something. Somebody could write a paper about it. However, that doesn't mean I've abandoned it! To prove this, here's a 5th Monday Ugh!!

There are so many good places to start talking about how bad this movie is. I want to poke fun at the name of the director, "Pitof" (one word, like Madonna); I want to point out that this super-hero action movie is--in all actuality--about make up; I want to dig in deep to my inherent dislike of the overused, washed-up material we so often find in movies of this vein; instead--after giving it some careful thought--I think I'll start here: This movie isn't about Catwoman. 

Those of you who haven't seen it you may find this claim hard to believe, but it's true. Selina Kyle is the woman who has tortured the heart of America's favorite bat for the last 73 years. This movie is about a mild-mannered woman who works in advertizing named Patience Phillips. Yes, you heard me right. Patience. Phillips. Instead of a disturbed but talented young woman who chooses to take upon herself the attributes of the domesticated feline, she becomes--wait for it--supernaturally infused with the power of catness (not to be confused with Katniss) for reasons which even the movie seems embarrassed to explain. 

The best promo picture ever taken? You be the judge.

Mostly this movie is about ogling Halle Berry in a revealing (if rather bizarrely constructed) costume, which is--quite frankly--demeaning. There are a few laughable fight scenes, and a moment or two of the obligatory bad science used by the detective/love interest to track the enigmatic jewel thief, but mostly it's just her. Being there. Bending. Jumping. Looking crafty. Uncovering the makeup plot that couldn't hope to hold the attention of a seven-year-old girl.

I would say there are two things about this movie that I genuinely enjoy: 1) There are cats in it, and I like cats. 2) Patience's friend is a little overweight, but her character doesn't have anything to do with her weight. It's shocking how rare it is to find a mainstream film with a character like this, so I'll take it where I can find it. Despite the fact that many overweight women live lives that have very little to do with their size, the vast majority of film and television labors under the damaging delusion that half of the world's population is defined by their size.

All-in-all, this is a good bad movie. For those who enjoy bad movies, there is something for you here. To those who legitimately enjoy this film...well, I'm not sure how to address you without being insulting. Just know that I respect your right to have your own opinions. :)

-MA 12.30.13

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