While Gods of Egypt was the most anticipated film of BMT, it was probably not the most likely to actually earn a Razzie. That honor would go to Nine Lives, a film entirely focused on Kevin Spacey being transformed into a cat. You would call it “Razzie bait,” if there was such a term. So of course that’s exactly what we’re watching this week. Despite generally avoiding kids films there was something about this film that got me excited to watch it. Perhaps the fact that it WAS ENTIRELY FOCUSED ON KEVIN SPACEY BECOMING A CAT… Let’s go!
Nine Lives (2016) – BMeTric: 35.1
(Huh, that is quite the regression to the mean. I do wonder whether this movie’s worthlessness was a little overblown. Would jive well with the second graph where the rating rose more significantly than I would imagine. Low 5’s isn’t great, but I wonder where among sub-20% rotten tomatoes movies that actually lies. That could be a good “rigorous” data study to do actually. Would be interesting to weight things and really try and get a good distribution for specific percentage (a situation that will be somewhat data sparse for sure).)
Rogerebert.com – Thumbs Down (0 Stars) – Which leads me to this question: Just who is supposed to be the target audience for “Nine Lives”? Certainly not feline fanciers, since we are told that, “Cats don’t care if you live or die.” Definitely not fans of Spacey, who did a much better coma on the most recent season of “House of Cards,” or Walken, whose trademark wild mass of hair seems more limp than usual.
(Hooray. I do like movies which are supposed to be kid’s movies but seem to just be a screenplay shoehorned into the body of a kid’s movie. Zero stars is also impressive, I love Thumbs Down rogerebert.com, like Leonard Maltin BOMBs they often reveal more about the critic in question’s tastes than the quality of the movie itself.)
(Yes … quite bad. I do not look forward to this. Walkin reminds me of his part in Envy. A facilitator of mischief in a wholly bizarre and unsatisfying comedy.)
Directors – Barry Sonnenfeld – (Known For: Men in Black 3; Men in Black; The Addams Family; Addams Family Values; Big Trouble; Get Shorty; BMT: Wild Wild West (Watched); RV: Runaway Vacation; Nine Lives; Men in Black II (Watched); The Concierge; Notes: Won the Razzie Award in 2000 for Worst Director for Wild Wild West; We saw Get Shorty leading up to the atrocious Be Cool. Searching variety brought up this 1995 article about him inking a deal with Disney. Neither Swordfish (not that Swordfish) or the remake to Another Man’s Poison was ever made, and then Sonnenfeld swiftly moved on to the smash hit Men In Black. Go figure.)
Writers – Gwyn Lurie (screenplay) – (Known For: The Music Never Stopped; BMT: Nine Lives; Notes: Not much about her, buts he is a producer and looking through variety reveals a few funny entries from the early 90s like this one. A comedy film based on the Guinness book of world record attempt at eating a whole 747!? Brilliant enough to never be made. Very few actual movies by her which is interesting considering he has often been attached to films. Bad luck. Did also make Variety for a large and elaborate treehouse that her and her husband built on their property. That’s fun.)
Matt Allen and Caleb Wilson(screenplay) – (Known For: Soul Surfer; BMT: Four Christmases; Nine Lives; Notes: Screenwriting partners. The only note I can find outside of their main credits is this bizarre 2010 article about a new movie being developed. Basically at the same time as (BMT) What to Expect When You’re Expecting was being developed another parenting guide was also being developed by these guys. Yeah, it was never made.)
Actors – Kevin Spacey – (Known For: American Beauty; The Usual Suspects; Se7en; Moon; The Ref; Superman Returns; L.A. Confidential; Horrible Bosses; Glengarry Glen Ross; A Time to Kill; The Negotiator; Elvis & Nixon; A Bug’s Life; Margin Call; Working Girl; K-PAX; Outbreak; The Men Who Stare at Goats; Henry & June; Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil; The Shipping News; Beyond the Sea; BMT: Edison; Fred Claus; Nine Lives; Father of Invention; Consenting Adults; Horrible Bosses 2; Casino Jack; Ordinary Decent Criminal; 21; Notes: Interesting only in the sense that we haven’t watched any of his BMT eligible films. Otherwise looking through recent notes he is basically only in the news for being involved with Relativity Media which emerged from bankruptcy to … well, immediately get embroiled in controversy. Whatever. Do you Spacey.)
Jennifer Garner – (Known For: Catch Me If You Can; Dallas Buyers Club; Juno; Daredevil; Miracles from Heaven; 13 Going on 30; The Kingdom; Draft Day; Danny Collins; The Invention of Lying; Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day; BMT: Elektra (BMT); Mr. Magoo; Dude, Where’s My Car?; Valentine’s Day (BMT); Ghosts of Girlfriends Past; Arthur; Nine Lives; Mother’s Day (BMT); Pearl Harbor; Catch and Release; Butter; The Odd Life of Timothy Green; Notes: What more is there to say about this secret BMT all-star? Nothing really is on the docket besides The Tribes of Palos Verdes with Mel Gibson’s son (no joke). She was honored with an award for her charity baby2baby so she’s got that going for her.)
Also stars Robbie Amell – (Seen in Cheaper by the Dozen 2)
Budget/Gross – $30 million / Domestic: $19,700,032 (Worldwide: $19,700,032)
(That is really really really rough. Amazing that the foreign take it totally absent, but I guess kid’s film with no IP attachment wouldn’t be much of a foreign draw. Huge bomb, but I would hope they kind of intended to play the long con with DVDs and product placement.)
#12 for the Comedy – Body Switch genre
(Basically the worst post 1994 body switch film in history if we were to be honest with ourselves. Is it even a body switch? It isn’t like Kevin Spacey is a cat (he appears to be in a coma). Otherwise there are too few movies for this plot to be interesting.)
Rotten Tomatoes – 11% (6/54): Not meow, not ever.
(Rough stuff rotten tomatoes. Just a shade above 10%, which is somewhat surprising. That 10% threshold it turns out is really hard to get, which I was somewhat surprised by. Even this (clearly one of the worst films of the year) couldn’t manage it.)
Poster – Nine Sklogs (B+)
(This is actually a pretty solid poster. Nice balance, font, color scheme. I generally don’t like the cast each put in a small window on the poster, but even that is spiced up a bit with the cat highlighting Kevin Spacey. I like it.)
Tagline(s) – His life just got put on paws. (C+)
(Egad! That is a… cat-astrophe. Thank you. Thank you. But seriously, this isn’t necessarily bad from the point of view of sounding and feeling like a tagline, but the pun seems really forced and is like a kick in the stomach.)
Keyword(s) – cat; Top Ten by BMeTric: 89.6 Catwoman (2004); 84.9 Date Movie (2006); 81.0 Movie 43 (2013); 80.7 Home Alone 3 (1997); 80.7 Vampires Suck (2010); 78.3 The Cat in the Hat (2003); 76.6 Spice World (1997); 74.2 Nutty Professor II: The Klumps (2000); 73.5 One Missed Call (2008); 71.5 Paranormal Activity 4 (2012);
(Oh yeah, Cat in the Hat for sure will be there. Actually a pretty solid list and most of these definitely have a cat in it in some way shape or form. Movie 43’s cat vignette was directed by Elizabeth Banks I think and was the reason she got Pitch Perfect 2 if I recall correctly.)
Notes – Up to 70% of Nine Lives was computer-generated. (Oh wow, that does explain a bit about how this was made)
A subplot involving catnip as an allegorical analogue for addiction was originally planned, but was cut both for time and because executives believed it would be too much for a PG children’s movie. (ha! This is going to be a kid’s movie)
The movie was released as Mr. Fuzzypants in United Arab Emirates. (makes sense, that is the cat’s name)
Five of the cast members have appeared in superhero productions. Marlina Weissman (Rebecca Brand) played Young Kara in the TV series of Supergirl, Teddy Sears (Josh Myers) & Robbie Amell (David Brand) starred in CW’s The Flash with Teddy as Hunter Soloman/Zoom & Robbie as Ronnie Raymond/Firestorm. Kevin Spacey portrayed Lex Luthor in Superman Returns and finally Jennifer Garner portrayed Elektra in the Daredevil & Elektra Marvel movies.
Rated the worst film of 2016 by Metacritic critics.