Nine Lives

How bad was it?

There was never any question of it being good. You knew it, I knew it. We went because it’s the last drive-in weekend of the season, and this is what was playing (double-billed with The Mechanic, and I bet you can’t wait to find out which was worse). We also brought some pizza and 4 dogs. In my little Beetle.

690Fudgie the 6 pound Yorkie growled every time the cat came on the screen. And the can comes on screen a lot. You know why? Because it’s Kevin Spacey. And I don’t just mean voiced by him, I mean the movie does a Freaky Friday switcheroo where Kevin Spacey’s human character somehow gets transposed into the body of a cat (while the real him is in a coma).

The movie looks as bad as it sounds, the production values shouting Disney channel, and made for TV. Jennifer Garner plays the put-upon wife but the poor thing can almost never get anyone to take her seriously as an actress so she’s used to this kind of mistreatment. She may not even realize she’s in a bad movie. This probably isn’t even the worse thing she’s in this year. And Christopher Walken is just feeling lucky to still be invited. To keep things simple they’ve had him reprise his role from Click. He’s the guy who makes you reevaluate your life by trapping you into a very unhappy scenario. He’s basically the modern day Ghost of Christmas Past. Kevin Spacey, however, is an Oscar winner. What’s his excuse?

In this movie, he plays a gross caricature of a businessman. He’s an egotistical, money hungry 960absentee father with zero nuance or dimensionality. When he gets turned into a cat you feel he got off lightly. And then he does every “help I’m a man trapped in a cat’s body” joke my 5 year old nephew could have come up with given some light prompting and a box of crayons. It’s horrible. It’s beyond horrible. Even the effects animating the cat are horrible, and mistakes are visibly noticeable. Cringe.

So, to recap, a short history of Kevin Spacey’s career:

1995: The Usual Suspects, a career high

1999: American Beauty, wins him another Oscar, this time lead

(long, hard fall, involving lows such as K-PAX, Fred Claus, and Horrible Bosses)

2016: Nine Lives, utter bottom

Why? Why has this happened, Kevin?

a) He owes someone at the production company serious money.

b) He mistakenly thought the script was ironic and\or symbolic.

c) He got paid a lot of money for probably like 10 days worth of work, and that subsidizes his true love, working in the theatah.

Nine Lives is bad. As bad as they say, and worse. But it has at least one fan: about 3 cars over from us, with its windows rolled way down, a little boy was laughing his guts out.

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24 thoughts on “Nine Lives

  1. bigandpinkytoes

    I recently had a dream that Kevin Spacey was doing a tour of motivational speeches. When he came to OKC I got a ticket on the very last row of a big auditorium. During his speech he called me down to the stage and said he had been waiting for this stop on the tour so he could tell me how I ruined his life. Then I woke up.
    Off topic I know, but I’ve always wished I would have stayed asleep 3 seconds later.

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  2. Paul. Writer, Blogger and Filmmaker

    Such a great actor in films you mention above plus, to name a few, LA CONFIDENTIAL, SWIMMING WITH SHARKS , SEVEN etc.

    Compared to NINE LIVES, K-PAX looks like a masterpiece. I think K-PAX was a pretty decent philosophical sci-fi drama despite have title that sounds like a brand of sanitary napkin.

    Watch HOUSE OF CARDS on Netflix for Spacey’s best work currently.

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  3. kmSalvatore

    OMyGaud….. Your so funny describing Christopher Walken… But so perfectly at the same time. I’ve always had mixed feelings about Spacey, can’t really explain why. And I can remember when we run to the show to see anything Walken was in… Wth is going on….making all this junk….?:)
    Thanks Jay, yep we’ll pass on this one as well

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    1. Jay Post author

      On the upshoot, there is a tiny bit of Christopher Walken dancing.
      I guess that’s almost obligatory these days.
      It doesn’t begin to make up for the awfulness of the movie.

      Liked by 1 person

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  4. Liz A.

    And so, I brace myself for the inevitable day when some teacher leaves this for his/her class on some random day when they’re out. And I inwardly groan. And wonder about said teacher’s taste. (There are several terrible movies that I’ve been subjected to in such a manner.)

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  5. Christopher

    Bill Murray did Garfield because he wanted to work with the Coen Brothers and didn’t realize the scriptwriter who called him was Joel Cohen.
    I want to believe that’s why Kevin Spacey did this, but maybe he’s fallen on hard times and can’t get work. Maybe his career has fallen apart like a house made out of something flimsy, like cards.

    Liked by 1 person

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