February 23, 2020

Answers to All Your Questions About "Cats"

“If you’re not familiar with the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats — or even if you are — then you probably have many, many questions after glimpsing December’s film adaptation, whose trailer pounced upon an unsuspecting and baffled nation this week.

Sporting a surprising, A-list cast including Taylor Swift, Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Jennifer Hudson, James Corden, Rebel Wilson, and Idris Elba, the film has been helmed by Les Miserables director Tom Hooper with, apparently, all the subtlety of original Cats star Elaine Page belting an E-flat.

But as weird as the trailer is, with its blurry CGI fur, oversized set pieces, and completely literal, straight-faced commitment to the concept of singing cats, there’s one very important thing you have to know:

Judging by the trailer, this movie, relatively speaking, isn’t that weird.

That’s because Cats has always been so much weirder than most people remember.

Just listen to the overture — here’s the original London version, from 1981 — and you’ll immediately hear Cats announce itself as quirky and slinky and spectacular, and wildly off-kilter from the typical Broadway milieu. So if you’re wondering what on earth this Cats movie is going to be like, strap in for a journey to the Heaviside Layer, we have answers, and they probably aren’t what you’re expecting.”

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