Movie Review by Nigel A. Messenger
Starring: Halle Berry, Benjamin Bratt, Sharon Stone, Lambert Wilson
We’ve been promised a number of Batman movies over the past couple of years but the only ones that seem to be hitting the screens anytime soon are BATMAN BEGINS aka BATMAN 5 which is still a little way off and CATWOMAN one of the most famous villains of Gotham City.
However asit’s turned out the movie CATWOMAN doesn’t have a single sighting or even mention of Batman and it’s not even set in Gotham city. These are not the only variations to what is undoubtedly going to be most people’s expectations.
The idea is that the film covers the beginnings of Catwoman or should I say the filmmakers’ own ideas of the beginning of Catwoman. There’s also a so-called plot going on about Catwoman (Halle Berry) stopping a cosmetic’s firm, with baddie Laurel Hedare (Sharon Stone), from releasing an addictive skin care cream onto the market which has a lot of unpleasant side effects. Do you really want to know more about the plot? Then I suggest you torture yourself and go and see it – and it will seem like torture – at least for any DC comics fan!
Aside from a shallow plot to say the least the casting of Halle Berry to play Catwoman was just plain wrong. Her idea of portraying Batman’s feline foe is to gradually imitate Eartha Kitt’s version of Catwoman from the sixties TV show. At the time Eartha played Catwoman for two or three episodes but was replaced by the fantastic Julie Newmar who made the role her own. Now that was a great Catwoman. A movie was also made of the BATMAN TV show in which Lee Meriwether played Catwoman and she also did the character very well. Far more recently Michelle Pfeiffer bought us another ‘purrfect’ version in BATMAN RETURNS so it’s not like Halle Berry had to look far for inspiration. For even more Catwoman history she could have turned to the best filmed version of Batman to date with the BATMAN animated TV show. The animators combined with the two actresses who have voiced Catwoman in that show, Adrienne Barbeau and Melendy Britt really can’t be faulted.
But no, Halle Berry had to try to do a bad impression of Eartha Kitt’s early sixties brief portrayal which done today seems more like a caricature than a characterisation.
To make matters even worse in this movie Catwoman’s alter ego is called Patience Phillips when it should be Selina Kyle.
Then we get into the realms of just plain stupid when in the film Catwoman goes to the cat’s owner (the cat that has supposedly given Catwoman her powers) and then this woman pulls out a Catwoman mask/hat complete with ears ready and waiting for the new Catwoman to wear. All this and becoming Catwoman instantly gives her the ability to cut her own hair and professionally highlight it in a perfect new style at super speed too. Pity Sharon Stone couldn’t have got that power because her hair in the film looked like she’d run into a lawnmower but at least she did portray her part well.
Ok enough of this, but let’s just say that this film and Halle Berry’s portrayal of Catwoman really irritated me plus it’s a lousy plot too.
So do yourself a favour and give this a miss and hope that if anyone else tries to make a Catwoman film, which I sincerely hope they do, they pick an actress who does justice to the part and looks convincing in a fight scene. Personally I think Jessica Alba would be excellent in the role. Now there’s a ‘purrfect’ pussy!