Wednesday, October 19, 2005


Catwoman or Suicide? I’ll Choose Sleeping Pills

Catwoman 2004
Warner Bros. Pictures
Director: Pitof
Editor: Sylvie Landra
Starring: Halle Berry, Benjamin Bratt, Sharon Stone, Alex Borstein
Rating: God Help Us All

Alright, I know that every critic and his mother has raked this movie over the coals before me. So at this point, making fun of this movie is like beating up a retarded kid after he’s fallen down a flight of stairs: still a lot of fun, but I suppose it’s entirely unnecessary. So, please indulge me while I take you on a little journey through hell because if I don’t vent here, I’m liable to start considering suicide as an option.

Everyone knows this movie sucks, and everyone knows why it sucks, so rehashing the major sucky points of the film risks the same redundancy that forced every major newspaper to run a review that somehow incorporated a cat-related pun in the headline. There’s no point in remarking upon the script’s ridiculous inanities and clear lack of proof-reading, the level of craftsmanship in the acting closely akin to that of dinner theatre performed by wait-staff, or the CGI lifted straight from bad Playstation games. Rather, the pleasure lies in picking apart the small details, that might go unnoticed to an average viewer stunned into lowered brain activity by the abominable dialogue, that piece together like painted tiles to form an enormous mosaic of crap. For example, the editing.

Editor Sylvie Landra, apparently fearful that allowing a shot to stay on screen for more than two seconds would allow the audience to register their displeasure, keeps the edits moving at a pace roughly approximating a heart palpitation. Or, the supporting cast. Usually, the critical barbs are leveled at the two leads, with Halle Berry taking top shots for her struggle to find the fine line between sexy confidence and drunken college student slutty, and Sharon Stone coming in second with her marvelously one-dimensional portrayal as the evil corporate head bent on world domination through disfiguring and corrosive make-up. But there are others equally deserving of scorn. Alex Borstein, whom alert viewers may recognize as the brutally irritating Ms. Swan from Mad TV, drew much of my ire as Berry’s over-sexed coworker, Sally. The writers keenly avoid any hint of progressiveness regarding how overweight people have needs too by making her lust an object of comic relief rather than a realistic character trait. So very typical of Hollywood standards to always make the archetypal fat guy (or, girl in this case) the laughing stock. Sickening.

Then, we have Benjamin Bratt , who quit playing a cop on a good TV show so he could play a cop in bad movies. He plays a cop. He’s been doing it long enough that he can do it well, though he looks pretty bored. As, I might add, am I. Writing about this movie is almost as boring as watching it, and the longer I go, the more the image of Halle Berry saying things like “purrrr-fect” with a miraculously straight face threatens to haunt my dreams, and not in the sexy way. In the drunken college student way. I suppose that’s why, in the past, she’s won an Oscar for a much better film.

The director goes by the pseudonym Pitof – as in the Pit of Hell, where, we can only hope, he will surely end up after making a movie of this caliber. Once there, he should be forced to watch this film for all of eternity … on the other hand, I doubt even Satan himself is that cruel.

If any kudos can be granted to this film, it must be awarded to costume designer, Koreen Heaver, who will have prepubescent boys fantasizing about Berry until they are well into their twenties.