The trailer for Respect starring Jennifer Hudson has just landed.
Summary: A tribe of cats called the Jellicles must decide yearly which one will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and come back to a new Jellicle life.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 26th December 2019
Thailand Cinema Release Date: 3rd January 2019
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Country: United States, United Kingdom
Director: Tom Hooper
Screenwriter: Les Hall, Tom Hooper, T.S. Eliot (poetry), Andrew Lloyd Webber (musical)
Cast: Jaih Betote (Coricopat), Larry Bourgeois (Socrates), Jonadette Carpio (Syllabub), Danny Collins (Mungojerrie), James Corden (Bustopher Jones), Laurie Davidson (Mr. Mistoffelees), Judi Dench (Old Deuteronomy), Jason Derulo (Rum Rum Tugger), Idris Elba (Macavity), Robbie Fairchild (Mukustrap), Francesca Hayward (Victoria), Jennifer Hudson (Grizabella), Melissa Madden-Gray (Griddlebone), Ian McKellan (Gus The Theatre Cat), Steven McRam (Shimbleshanks the Railway Cat), Naoimh Morgan (Rumpleteazer), Daniela Norman (Demeter), Bluey Robinson (Alonzo), Freya Rowley (Jellylorum), Ida Saki (Electra), Zizi Strallen (Tantomile), Taylor Swift (Bombalurina), Mette Towley (Cassandra), Eric Underwood (Admetus), Rebel Wilson (Jennyanydots), Ray Winstone (Growltiger)
Running Time: 110 mins
Classification: G (Australia) TBC (Thailand)
Dave Griffiths’ Cats Review:
When you look back of 2019 and think of what films made the biggest impact in cinema there were perhaps none quite talked about the way Cats was. When the trailer dropped for director Tom Hooper’s (Les Miserables, The King’s Speech) version of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical it made the nightly news for all the wrong reasons. For some Hooper’s cats looked strange, not-quite-human not-quite-cat, but others (like myself) found themselves erring on the side caution wondering or not if this was going to turn out to be some kind of visual spectacular.
To be honest Cats sits somewhere in the middle. While it is not the musical masterpiece that Hooper created with Les Miserables it is also not as terrible as some would have you think. Perhaps the best way to approach Cats is to think you are about to enter a cinema to watch a theatre musical being projected onto the big screen because this feels much more like a concert than it does a cinematic experience.
Originally based on a collection of poems from T.S. Eliot Cats is told through the eyes of Victoria (Francesca Hayward – The Sun Is God, Extra) a young cat who finds herself dumped in a London alleyway one night. She soon finds herself making friends with a magical cat called Mr. Mistoffelees (Laurie Davidson – Will, The Good Liar) who soon introduces her to the world of the Jellicle Cats.
On the night she arrives she finds that the Jellicles are eagerly awaiting the arrival of one of their oldest members – their matriarch Old Deuteronomy (Judi Dench – Skyfall, Shakespeare In Love) who on this night every year choices which Jellicle will live the life they have always dreamed of. But not everything runs smoothly as the villainous Macavity (Idris Elba – The Losers, Star Trek Beyond) plans on eliminating all of his competition.
Surprisingly the plot of Cats does work on the big screen. It is extremely light on though and at times the film feels like an extra couple of songs have been added to pad it out to feature film length. Despite what many felt from when that first trailer surfaced you do also find yourself as an audience member connecting with the cats on screen. Each has their own persona and whether you want to admit to it or not you do find yourself barracking for a cat to win Old Deuteronmy’s approval.
The film’s biggest weakness though is the way it is put together. The stories and scenes are almost presented the way they would be if you were reading through the original collection of short stories. A certain cat will perform and point out their strengths and weaknesses and then they are spirited away by Macavity before they can have their time with Old Deuteronomy. The sequences though where Macavity and his right-hand cat Growltiger (Ray Winstone – The Departed, Beowulf) are keeping the other cats captive are more like you would expect from a pantomime though and never become as menacing as they perhaps should have been.
While the sequences of watching the Jellicles perform does at times seem magical there is none of the wow factor here that we got with other musicals like Les Miserables and Moulin Rouge. Les Miserables worked on the big screen because it was believable while Moulin Rouge was way over the top which suited the theatre world that it was set in. Cats has the disadvantage of not being believable and it feels like perhaps it would have worked a little better if Hooper had followed in the footsteps of Baz Luhrmann and made this film go more into the fantasy realm as well.
What does work for Cats though is the casting. Judi Dench and Sir Ian McKellan (Gods And Monster, Lord Of The Rings) steal the show as they expertly lead their younger cast. James Corden (Trolls, Peter Rabbit) brings in just the right amount of comic relief while playing Bustopher Jones but it is Jennifer Hudson (Dream Girls, The Secret Life Of Bees) who shines the brightest with her amazing vocals in the role of Grizabella. The ballet skills of Francesca Hayward also allows her to gracefully float across the screen as she leads the audience through this strange new world.
Cats may not leave its audience in awe the way Les Miserables did but it does have its own special charm. The best way to approach the movie is to go into the cinema knowing you will be about to watch a theatre production rather than a big blockbuster film.
Average Subculture Rating:
Other Subculture Entertainment Cats Reviews:
Our Cats review that appeared in ‘The Phuket News’ can be read at this link – https://www.thephuketnews.com/cats-gives-us-reason-to-paws-74164.php
“One Tree Hill” turned into one of the most popular television shows of the early 2000s. The show, which was created by Mark Schwahn, filled the void left by the demise of “Dawson’s Creek” and while it always seemed to skirt the tight line between soap or drama did produce some moments of good acting. With the show being off the air for a while now we take a look at what the members of the cast are doing now.
Bethany Joy Lenz: Bethany Joy Lenz played the sweet and trusting Haley James Scott in “One Tree Hill.” During her time on the show her character of Haley also made a name for herself as a singer, a career that Lenz also wanted to pursue. Since the show ended Lenz has released two albums independently – “Then Slowly Grows” (2012) and “Your Woman” (2013). She has also done some television work, appearing in the shows “Sock Monkee Therapy,” “C.S.I: Crime Scene Investigation” and “Men At Work” in small roles. She has also had bigger roles in the hit series “Dexter” where she played Cassie Jollenston.
Sophia Bush: No character on “One Tree Hill” changed as much as Brooke Davis. The challenging role saw Sophia Bush go from playing a trampy High School cheerleader in the first two seasons to a gifted young business woman in the later seasons. During her time on “One Tree Hill” Sophia Bush appeared in notable films like “John Tucker Must Die,” “The Hitcher” and “Chalet Girl.” Since the show wrapped production she has appeared in the television movie “Hatfields & McCorys” and had a starring role in the short lived “Partners” alongside Brandon Routh. In 2013 she played Erin Lindsay in “Chicago Fire” which has now spun-off into “Chicago PD” in which she now has a lead role.
James Lafferty: Before “One Tree Hill” James Lafferty only had limited acting experience. Instead it was his basketball skills that won over creator Mark Schwahn, something that came in handy seeing his character of Nathan Scott started out as a high school basketballer and eventually made it to the big league in the NBA. Since “One Tree Hill” ended Lafferty has appeared in a television show called “Crisis” and also two feature films – “Lost On Purpose” (with Jane Kaczmarek) and horror film “Oculus” with Katee Sackhoff. He will also soon be seen on the big screen once again, this time alongside Skeet Ulrich in the war film “Citizen Soldiers.”
Lee Norris: Lee Norris has to be one of the luckiest cast members of “One Tree Hill.” His character of Mouth started off as a ‘fringe’ character – a lovable loser who the other characters always seemed to feel comfortable opening up to. As the show went on though the audience ended up loving Mouth and soon Lee Norris was a full-time cast member. Before “One Tree Hill” Norris had appeared in “Dawson’s Creek” as well as feature film “Zodiac.” Since the show wrapped he has appeared in one episode of “Paulilu Mixtape” and is currently filming “Gone Girl,” a feature film directed by David Fincher and starring Ben Affleck.
Paul Johansson: Often the bad guy of a television series is the character most remembered. Actor Paul Johansson certainly had the bad guy role down pat in “One Tree Hill” when he played evil Dad turn murderer as Dan Scott. Before the show began Johansson had already put together a pretty decent acting Resume. Since the show has finished he has been one of the busiest actors. He has appeared in television shows “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” and “Beauty And The Beast.” He has also appeared in number of television movies including “Stonados” and “House Of Secrets.” Johansson fans can also be excited by the fact that he will soon be appearing in the feature films “Dear Eleanor” (with Jessica Alba) and John Stockewell’s “Kid Cannabis.”
Chad Michael Murray: “One Tree Hill” was Chad Michael Murray’s show. In the early days the show centered completely around his character of the basketball playing writer Lucas Scott, but some off-screen wrangling saw Murray leave the show before it wrapped production in 2012. That hasn’t seemed to have affected Murray’s career and since his departure he has worked on other shows including “Southland” and “Chosen.” He has also appeared in a number of feature films including “Day One” (with Kat Dennings), the critically acclaimed “Fruitvale Station,” “The Haunting In Connecticut 2: Ghosts Of Georgia” (with Katee Sackhoff), “Cavemen” and “Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas.” He will also soon be appearing on the big screen once again in “Other People’s Children” and the new Nicolas Cage film “Left Behind.”
Hilarie Burton: The other half of “One Tree Hill’s” most epic romances was Hilarie Burton as she played the music obsessed Peyton. Before “One Tree Hill” Burton was mainly known as a VJ and she had had one small appearance in “Dawson’s Creek” playing herself. While she was working on “One Tree Hill” she put together a decent resume by appearing in feature films including “Our Very Own,” “The List,” the underrated “Normal Adolescent Behaviour,” “Solstice” and “The Secret Life Of Bees” (as part of an all-star cast including Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson and Dakota Fanning). Since she departed “One Tree Hill” she has appeared on television shows including “Castle,” “White Collar,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Hostages.” She has also had roles in television movies like “Naughty Or Nice,” “The List” and “Christmas On The Bayou.” Her latest film credit was in “Bloodworth” (with Hilary Duff, Val Kilmer and Kris Kristofferson) and she will soon be appearing in “Plastic Jesus” (with Mackenzie Foy and Paul Schneider.
Antwon Tanner: One of the other lucky actors in “One Tree Hill” was Antwon Tanner. Just like Lee Norris his character of Skills was a ‘fringe’ character who only seemed to be in the show for comic relief. However the character proved popular with the audience and soon he became a full cast member. Over the years before he was on the show Tanner had appeared in a number of movies including the underrated “Coach Carter” (with Denzel Washington). Since the show finished in 2012 he has also been in other movies including “One Blood,” “Percentage,” “Crush,” “The Dempsey Sisters” and “Q.” He will soon also be appearing in new movies “C.R.U.,” “7 Faces Of Jack The Ripper,” “Two Faced” and “Who Can I Run To.”
Yes “One Tree Hill’ may have finished but it seems like fans of the show will be able to watch their favorite actors on the big screen for a long time to come.