Even the most jaded among us needs a little blast of cuteness from time to time, and if that cuteness comes with a sarcastic commentary and a nice gentle plot, all the better.
Grumpy Cat is…seriously, if you need me to tell you then I’m not sure you ought to be on the internet. Read the reviews in “Empire” or something. Her real name is Tardare Sauce, she’s a slightly disabled Ragdoll with the most adorable expression ever, and the fame she’s found allowed her owner, a former waitress, to quit her job and take Grumpy all round the world. Ain’t that lovely?
In this film, despite her perhaps being the world’s most famous cat for her face, no-one wants her so she lives in a petshop in the mall. The owner’s a bit of a sadsack, and his young volunteer Chrystal is having a tough time trying to make friends. There’s a dog worth a million dollars just sat around the shop which will get the owner out of his financial difficulties, plus some thieves who want the dog, plus a magic Santa who gives Chrystal a special wishing coin. She wishes for a friend, and lo and behold! She can hear Grumpy talking. Who’s going to rescue the dog, stop the thieves and save the day?
Aubrey Plaza is the perfect voice for Grumpy Cat – her bored, above-it-all performance on “Parks and Recreation” might as well have been a five-year audition. This film depends on how much you like that, really. A very cute cat endlessly being sarcastic, commenting on the action, pausing the film to remind you it’s her film, pausing the film to show you Aubrey Plaza in the voice booth, having the occasional advert for Grumpy Cat merchandise in the middle of a scene, mocking the nature of Lifetime movies, and so on, breaking the fourth wall so much that this barely qualifies as a film at all.
But why am I mentioning this? It’s a film about the world’s most famous cat, with enough cuteness and drama for kids, and enough jokes for the parents. You’re not going to watch “Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever” for the searing indictment of a nation’s criminal justice system – you’re going to watch it because the world can be pretty miserable and a cute cat saving the day while mocking you slightly for watching it is just what you need sometimes.
I have a Ragdoll. His name is Yadier Miaow-lina (named after my wife’s favourite baseball player) and luckily I didn’t get him to be famous because all he does is flop out on the unoccupied part of the sofa and make a chirping noise occasionally. Still, for those of us with normal (if still lovely) animals, we’ve got this.
Rating: thumbs up