by Susan Starr and Kevin Kocur
In “Catwoman”, HalleBerry plays clumsy, mild-mannered and badly dressed Patience Phillips. Patience works in advertising at a cosmetics company. Unfortunately for her, she doesn’t know it is an evil cosmetics company. Patience is murdered after inadvertently discovering this evilness. You might think it is a spoiler, but the movie opens with Patience explaining how she found empowerment and personal fulfillment after death. You see, she was turned into a catwoman by a mystical Egyptian cat. Or something. I was unclear on what happened.
People familiar with cats may find it cute how she first demonstrates her new cat nature by ignoring people and being surly when she talks to them. She then goes on to spend way too much time jumping on the furniture, walking along the back of the couch and climbing things. We get it, she’s cat-like. Sadly, there are no bathroom scenes so we don’t find out just how far this cat-like nature goes. She also does things that don’t seem particularly cat-like to me such as giving herself an awful haircut with red streaks, wearing a black leather bondage outfit and carrying a whip. Maybe cats are into bondage?
Sharon Stone is kind of fun as the wife of the cosmetics company CEO. She is bitter about being replaced by a younger model, both as company spokeswoman and in her husband’s bed. Benjamin Bratt, looking older and more tired than in his “Law & Order” days, plays a police officer who is the love interest to both Catwoman and Patience. Other than that the movie looks terrible. The special effects look like animation and the action sequences look cheap. Even the beautiful HalleBerry doesn’t look very good. The dialogue is dreadful. The plot about an eeevil face cream is mildly amusing, but I really can’t recommend the movie.
Meeow! HalleBerry in black leather and riding a Ducati?! I must have used up all 9 lives and gone to Heaven! Nope. More like Hell. Neither Berry’s sleek black outfit nor the Monster’s sleek black lines could save this movie. First of all, the lone bike scene is great, but not long enough (they NEVER are). And apparently Catwoman is an expert rider. So much so that neither a helmet or eye protection are necessary for our Kruisin’ Kitty. At least when she arrives at her destination her hair is perfect. Although I don’t think Ducati will be releasing the Style-Monster 900 any time soon…
The action scenes look too pieced together and all of the Computer Generated Images come off more like a cheap cartoon or video game. The plot is straight out of Eeevil Plot Planning 101 and the secondary characters are completely forgettable. Too bad, because there are brief moments when the movie is actually fun: whether it’s Patience (post cat-transformation) on a date at a Sushi bar scarfing down Mahi or at home surrounded by empty tuna cans. Mixing it up on the dance floor, or cracking her whip. Actually, like most of the film, I didn’t understand the whip. Maybe her father was Indiana Jones.
Trivia: Halle Berry fell in love with one of the cats used in the movie and announced she was going to adopt the 13 pound cat. Some news sources mistakenly described the cat as a tiger, prompting protest letters to Berry from an animal rights group.