Nine Lives - 2016
A stuffy businessman finds himself trapped inside the body of his family's cat. This is a movie that Emmy nominated-, Golden-Globe- and Academy-Award-winning actor Kevin Spacey decided to do between seasons of House of Cards. This is also the movie that Capitol One spokeswoman Jennifer Garner got from her agent.
The movie opens with voice-over of Spacey telling the audience how much he hates cats and that they aren’t humans. This is how the writers beautifully set up how ironic it will be for him to become one. Spacey, in a span of a few minutes, jumps off a CGI plane landing on a CGI skyscraper and showing off to everyone, then drives a sports car through the city at top speed without consequence. He is what a kid would assume a rich businessman is and gets to do with his money and power. We get to hear the word cat and see the image cat at least 100 times in the first fifteen minutes. But remember he hates cats, he says it a lot and people around say it too. Cat.
He gets mysteriously guided to a cat store called “Purkins”. Get it? The store is owned by Christopher Walken, reprising his role from Click as a man that chooses someone randomly to teach him a lesson. After Spacey chooses a cat for his daughter, Walken tells his cats “Ok cats, let’s do this”. Spacey goes to the top of his building and gets into an accident involving lightning and falling, landing on a lower floor. When he wakes up he is in the body of the cat he bought. Magic! We can hear Spacey talk from the cat but nobody can hear him, all they hear are the constant meows of a desperate Academy-Award-winning actor trapped in this movie. But one man can hear him and that man is Walken. He explains to him something about, you know, a life lesson he needs to learn to avoid pooping in a litter box for the rest of his life. Cat.
Quick note: has anyone investigated how the producers of this movie got Spacey to do this movie? Gambling debt or blackmail? Is this just him balancing out his career. He thought he was doing too much “good” work for too long so he had to put out something “bad”? Maybe his fame was being held for ransom. Maybe he has a rare sleeping disorder in where he sleep-acts in terrible cat movies. I know, very specific, but anything is possible. Cat.
Sorry, getting back to the hilarity of cat man. We get a montage of a cat trying to open a pen so he can write his wife a letter, a hilarious montage of him trying to talk to his wife, and my favorite, a cat drinking scotch and getting drunk. He pees on the carpet and get scared of the image of a CGI cat in the trash can. All of this with the voice over comedic barbs of Spacey. I have a theory he recorded his lines over the phone while in the bathroom on the set of House of Cards.
Oh, his name going forward is Mister Fuzzypants. Cat.
So, Garner is fed up with all the bad behavior Fuzzypants has done so far and decides to call the cat whisperer. Walken comes in and tells him he needs to be a cat. That’s the lesson - be a cat. He starts eating cat food, using the litter box and taking baths. Helping with the math homework, preparing coffee and playing with a pink balloon. You know, normal cat things. I guess if I can walk away from this experience with a speck of wisdom, it’s that everyone should be more of a cat. Because being a cat is what it takes to be a human being. Right? Did I do this correctly? It’s hard being a movie critic. Cat.
I forgot to mention two side plots going on as we see the adventures of Mister Fuzzypants. The company is trying to build the tallest building in America, while a second company is trying to beat them to the punch. Also, Kelly Ripa’s husband is trying to sell the company under the nose of Mister Fuzzypants’ son. They all culminate together at the same time in a dramatic countdown. The company is about to get sold, the building is about to get inaugurated and his body is about to die. You can cut the tension in the room with a sarcastic knife. Cat.
The son saves the company by base jumping of the top of the building and landing in front of the press with documents proving he is the owner of the company. Spacey wakes up from his coma. Side note: it’s hilarious that his character was in a coma all along, because its reflected in the voice over acting. Ripa’s husband is turned into a cat and Spacey becomes a better cat-man. The end. It took five people to write this movie… this is why I love movies? Cat.
Nine Lives is currently streaming on Amazon Prime. Spacey wasted his lone one on this one.
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