Movie Review – Jackie K Cooper
“Nine Lives” (EuropaCorp)
“Nine Lives” is a family comedy aimed for people who like cats. If you are not a cat fan you probably will not like this movie, but if you are it will be like catnip for your soul. There are moments of real humor in the script and the acting is good enough to sell the story. It is not a classic Disney film but it is enough like a Disney movie to fulfill the expectations of its audience. Plus cats seem to be in vogue these days.
Kevin Spacey stars as Tom Brand a Trump-like industrialist who consistently puts his business goals before his family. He has already burned through one family and is now on family number two. His current wife Lara (Jennifer Garner) and their daughter Rebecca (Malina Weissman) are fighting the sadness of their separation from him. With Rebecca’s birthday approaching Lara is constantly begging, pleading and demanding that he spend more time with his family.
On Rebecca’s birthday Tom makes a rush visit to a local pet shop in order to purchase a cat, which is the gift Rebecca has requested. He shop owner Felix Perkins (Christopher Walken) is a wizard of sorts and has the ability to transfer Tom’s soul into the body of a cat. Tom’s body meanwhile has been in an accident and he is lying comatose in the hospital. The cat aka “Mister Fuzzypants” has been ensconced in his home.
The rest of the movie is spent with Tom trying to communicate with Lara and Rebecca by making Mr. Fuzzypants act human. This is where a huge amount of special effects/CGI are brought into play and the movie takes off. I imagine kids will find the cat’s highjinks to be hilarious and a large number of adults will too.
Spacey has vain and remote down to a science and is totally convincing in the role of Tom. Garner makes enough effort so that she is okay as Lara, but she doesn’t break a sweat trying to do so. Cheryl Hines steals every scene she is in as wife number one, and Mark Consuelos is surprisingly effective as the villain of the show. Christopher Walken is Christopher Walken and for many of us fans that is enough.
The movie is rated PG for comic violence.
“Nine Lives” is a much more enjoyable movie than I thought it would be. Spacey, Hines and Consuelos provide the human touch but the film belongs to the cat from beginning to end. The combined effects of an adorable kitty combined with great special effects will have you grinning like a cheshire cat as you leave the theater.
I scored “Nine Lives” a feline 6 out of 10.
Jackie K Cooper
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