review by Bobby Blakey
There are movies that come along that the trailers alone make you question why it exists or could there be something to it that is just missed by a bad trailer. One of those films is that of Nine Lives that features a great cast including Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Garner, Robbie Amell, Cheryl Hines, Mark Conseulos, and Christopher Walken, but the trailers looked horrendous. Could this film have something more to offer or will it be a switch that no one cares about?
Nine Lives follows a daredevil billionaire at the top of his game workaholic lifestyle has disconnected him from his family, particularly his beautiful wife and his adoring daughter. With her 11th birthday here all she wants is a cat, but he hates cats, but time is running out. When his GPS directs him to a mystical pet store brimming with odd and exotic cats- where the store's eccentric owner presents him with a majestic tomcat, named Mr. Fuzzypants, a bizarre turn of events finds him trapped inside the body of Mr. Fuzzypants. Adopted by his own family, he begins to experience what life is truly like for the family pet, and as a cat, he begins to see his family and his life through a new and unexpected perspective. Meanwhile, his family adjusts to life with an odd and stubborn cat, and his son, steps up in ways he never expected. If any hope exists of returning to his family as the husband and father they deserve, he will have to learn why he has been placed in this peculiar situation and the great lengths he must go to earn back his human existence. When you see the cast involved and the fact that director Barry Sonnenfeld is involved you think that there might be something here, but sadly there is nothing. This film is pretty much everything you might expect from the trailer and fails to offer up anything that helps to redeem it in anyway. Walken is fine here as he fits in with just about anything weird, but the strange casting is Spacey. He just feels like he is walking through the motions the majority of the time as opposed to the usual brilliance he offers.
The story is something that Disney used to deliver often with films like The Shaggy Dog with body switching in both humans and animals, but it fails to do anything new or memorable with the genre. You know the moment the film starts exactly how it is going to end and what is going to happen, but still have to sit through whatever nonsense they slap in between. The one shining moment of the film is the cat that is entertaining to watch when it is actually the cat, but more often than not it is a CGI cat to do crazy things for comedic effect. Obviously I am not the target market for this film and I am sure that most kids will find it entertaining, but it just felt like such a misstep to have such a great cast and director and not offer up something that could have stood out. If you don’t think the trailers are in anyway entertaining then you will dislike the movie just as much, but for those on the fence decide for yourself.