I am still questioning why this exists. So this is about a highly successful business man (Kevin Spacey). All he thinks about is work, and he just simply doesn’t have time to think about silly family events such as birthday parties. As fate may have it, he’s going to have to learn an overdue lesson on how to appreciate his family… in the form of a cat. Kevin Spacey is an actor with a whole lot of clout. He’s won multiple Oscars, and doesn’t have to prove anything to anybody, because he already knows that he is one of the greats. With Nine Lives, there are only two reasonable causes behind him signing the contract to make this: 1. he wanted to make a movie for any kids, nieces or nephews that are in his life, or 2. he’s being blackmailed.
Watch this and tell me I’m wrong. I dare you.
This really is a bizarre movie, and it has everything to do with the talent that is behind it. These aren’t small fish in Spacey, Jennifer Garner, Christopher Walken and Barry Sonnenfeld (aka the director of Men in Black). Yes, it does seem like a stretch in the negative direction for anybody associated here to be reaching this low. It is the kind of movie that you watch to laugh at, not with. If you’re a hipster and you like to watch movies ironically (which I suppose that I am to a degree), then this is your ticket. It never stops being ridiculous all the while tapping into tropes that you would expect to see in a family movie that features a human that is trapped in a cat body. Is it a career low for everybody involved? Sure, but that doesn’t change the fact that it never stop surprising you with the levels of cliché that it reaches.
And no, I don’t think I have ever written the phrase “surprises you with cliché” before.
When the movie goes full blown CGI with this cat performing ludicrous stunts, it looks daffy, and there are just so many crazy scenes here, they actually end up being memorable. It also takes are dark turn at one point with the threat of suicide, and I didn’t expect the movie to try and take it there, which really caught me off guard. There’s also a scene where Kevin Spacey, in cat form, tries to get drunk off of scotch, and it just leaves you scratching your head, for better or worse. I do think the potential is there for you to have fun with this if you watch this in the right state of mind, but make no mistake: this is not a good movie, and everybody associated with this should be ashamed of themselves, if only for the number of cat puns that they have brought to the silver screen.
Nine Lives (2016) *1/2
– Critic for Hire