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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Friday, January 10, 2020

entry arrow10:46 PM | Meow

Ladies and gentlemen, drum roll please. I went, I saw, and I liked Tom Hooper's adaptation of Cats, the musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber based on the children's poetry by T.S. Eliot. Admittedly, the low expectations helped. Also being familiar with the story -- a simple compendium of various types of Jellicle Cats introducing themselves before going to a ball where one of them gets chosen to go to the Heaviside Layer -- allowed me to suspend logic and disbelief and just lean back and enjoy the sheer madness of the movie, the surreality of every creative choice, the bizarreness of the digital furs, the inexplicable horniness of it all. The film feels very much like Grizabella herself, the former glamour cat, now ostracized and seeking some sort of redemption while waxing nostalgia for the days when she was beautiful. When she sings "Memories," her torch song, I was genuinely moved. Like her, Cats has its heart in the right place. But I've always loved films that go where the timid dare not go. [I have a special place in my heart for Darren Aronofsky's mother!] This was sheer camp, a film ready-made to be misunderstood -- and guess what, it indeed was, and received such a fierce critical drubbing from almost everyone that I had to become suspicious of the lynch mob. It is not a great film, but it will become legendary: first for its excesses and camp, and maybe one day, finally for its heart.

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