Nine lives makes for purrfect humour
Kevin Spacey (Tom Brand) is caught in a pickle when he finds himself stuck in the body of the family cat because he prioritises his work instead of his family in director Barry Sonnenfeld and screenwriters Gwyn Lurie, Matt Allen and Caleb Wilson’s family comedy, Nine Lives.
Though the concept for the film isn’t new (The Shaggy Dog – 2006, Dogmatic – 1999, and The Dogfather – 2010) where a human soul or spirit gets transferred into an animal, this rendition, involving a cat is funny, heartwarming and life changing.
Watch it if you love cats and if you are looking for some light hearted family entertainment. The humour can teach you a thing or two about the importance of family.
While Tom Brand has a loyal son, a devoted wife and a daughter who thinks the world of him, he is only concerned about one thing; work. He spends most of his time at the office and is obsessed with building the tallest skyscraper in the Northern hemisphere.
He likes to buy his way out of his problems, but his life takes a different course on the day of his birthday when he decides to get his daughter the one thing she has been asking for and which he hates: a cat.
He ends up at a mystical pet store owned by Mr Perkins (Christopher Wallace) where he buys a tomcat (Mr Fuzzypants) and then through a serious of unlikely mystical events, he finds himself trapped in the body of the cat and then has to race against time to return to his human body.
I am not really a fan of Spacey; to me he has always acted poorly in films so I have never really taken him seriously. However, this role is quite refreshing and humourous; you don’t actually see him throughout the majority of the film.
The audience hears his smug and sarcastic voice and quips during the escapades of Mr Fuzzypants.
Jennifer Garner plays his wife Lara and Malina Weissman plays daughter Rebecca. Both are excellent in their roles.
Garner is her usual motherly self and sells the whole I am devoted to my husband and daughter story very well.
Weissman is adorable and charming and she warms your heart when she smiles and makes you feel like everything going wrong in the world will be alright with her positive mindset.
The film has some very nice CGI effects. The part in the film where Brand in feline form, attempts to write a note to his family to let them know that he is actually trapped inside the cat’s body and the scene where Rebecca dances with the cat, are just two of the best parts of the movie.
Kudos to the director for making the scenes believable.
Nine lives not only makes for great family entertainment, it also teaches the audience the value of spending time with those we love.
Of course, it is a bit corny… the entire concept of a human being ‘put’ inside of a cat. And the plot could scare some younger kids into thinking that if they are ‘bad’ they will be reincarnated into a cat or some kind of animal, but overall it is worth a watch and your money.
Nine lives is currently showing at Ster Kinekor Grove Mall.