Cats is currently rocking a 18 percent “Fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but even that miserable score unsells just how many times you’ll ask, “What the heck am I watching?” Is there a scene where James Corden, as a “digital fur” cat, rolls around in and eats trash for seemingly forever? Yes. Is it a metaphor for the entire movie? Perhaps. Even the cast, including Corden and Taylor Swift, is subtly distancing themselves from the film, which was supposed to be an Oscars contender; now it’ll be lucky to make $30 million.
“I said yes right away,” Swift told Variety before the movie came out. “You have to dislocate the end result with your experience and you have to commit to doing it only based on what you think the experience will be and if the experience will teach you things that enrich your life.” The key phrasing in there is “dislocate the end result,” as in, “Cats star Taylor Swift wishes to dislocate the end result of being in Cats.”
Corden hasn’t seen Cats yet, but he’s heard that “it’s terrible,” the late-night host joked (?) on The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show. “I’ll catch it one day, I imagine.”
Meanwhile, here’s director Tom Hooper, seemingly knowing the reaction to come, speaking to the Daily Mail at the world premiere: “I finished it at 8 a.m. yesterday after 36 hours in a row, putting the finishing touches on it. So I’m very happy to be here with it fully finished, and we’ll let the audience decide.” The audience has decided.