A Cat in Paris Reviews

Page 1 of 13
Super Reviewer
May 14, 2013
A cat burglar helps a policewoman find the mob boss who kidnapped her daughter.
Eminently forgettable, A Cat in Paris doesn't offer much. The plot is fairly basic, and the revenge fantasy is overbearing and lacking in any subtlety. The animation is neither realistic nor stylized.
Overall, this is a short film, but I can't say a lot about it because it doesn't say a lot for itself.
Super Reviewer
½ June 28, 2012
It was a short and simple movie. Great movie to watch with the family. Great for the kids to be more specific.
Super Reviewer
½ November 5, 2011

Une vie de chat, that was nominated for a César for Best Animated Film and was selected to te Berlinale, both in this year (2011), is a 2D love letter to film noir, crime films and, why not, comic superheroes, Hitchcock, the Pink Panther and maybe some more other things, all filled with a great soundtrack that "starts" with a vintage rendition of Billie Holiday's I wished on the moon and "finishes" with a delightful typical French song: "Java sous la neige" by Serge Besset. The opening credits (especially the song "Monte en l' air", also by Serge Besset) instantly reminded me of Spider-Man's, but someone pointed out that there are also similarities with Batman. Either way, the references to fantasy adventure films is also seen in the Colossus of Nairobi walking over Paris like King Kong does in New York.

All that said, Une vie de chat sounds to be a great film. The plot surrounds a cat that leads a double life: during the day he is Dino, the pet of the little Zoe whose mother is a police superintendent and whose dad was killed by the gangster Victor Costa, and at night he is the cat, who follows a nice burglar over the rooftops of Paris. Things get bad when Zoe decides to follow Dino and is caught by Costa and his men. Now Dino and Nico, the burglar, have to save Zoe.
Perhaps the film is able to keep kid's attention, but despite all the references* and the amazing gallery of "charming" and funny characters - the dumb night watchmens, the gang of gungsters, the big boss, the old lady neighbour, the little dog (a Yorkshire?)* - what started as a great promise, let me down.

I read somewhere that the drawings recall Matisse and Picasso. I have not thought about that, but they really do. Not being the biggest fan of neither Matisse nor Picasso, that can explain my discomfort with some characters' facial expressions. Speaking of the drawings, the amazing "scene in the dark" (my favourite) reminded me somehow of the Simon's Cat, with the difference that Jean-Loup Felicioli's lines are thinner, resulting in a more elegant outcome. (However, this elegance might be due to the white lines over the black screen). And speaking of the characters, I'd like to make just a small observation on how Nico and Zoey's nanny seem to have foreign origins. Being the immigration a major topic in France, nothing more natural than "bring it up" in a casual way.

* And the boat-rowing scene ... remember The Night of the Hunter? The argument in the car about food comes from Goodfellas.

** In the first scene where the dog appears barking, it's funny to note how its big shadow on the wall gives the idea of power to then, in the next moment, it be knocked down by a slipper.

Super Reviewer
February 12, 2012
A Cat in Paris is a children's book come to life, but with the surprisingly mature feel of an adult thriller. This has the complex machinations of classic suspense. The cat really isn't the focus of the film at all, but rather a device by which to interweave a myriad of plot threads involving human characters. Indeed this could have been cast with human actors and succeeded better than most modern mysteries. One might question the morality of the script's sympathetic portrayal of a burglar. Think Cary Grant in Hitchcock's To Catch Thief. He really has the little girl's best interest at heart, mind you. The production isn't perfect, but it's close. Not a single frame is wasted as this mystery unfolds in a brisk 62 minutes. Illustrators Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli directed this comedy drama which put French studio Folimage in the spotlight. This deservedly received an unexpected Academy Award nomination for Best Animated Feature in 2012.
Super Reviewer
½ January 13, 2014
Zoe's cat brings her dead lizards every day which repulses her mother, Jeanne. If only she knew what he really gets up to at night when he goes for a walk. Because that is when the cat acts as accomplice for a second story burglar, Dino, who Jeanne in her job as a police superintendent is on the hunt for. But first and foremost in her mind is the fact that Costa who killed her husband is back in town and is planning a huge job.

"A Cat in Paris" is a hand-drawn animated film that has more going for it than just its old fashioned charm. That's because it is deeper than your average animated film with a fast pace and even a couple of white knuckle moments. However, that same quick pace works against the film as it too conveniently puts Dino and Costa in the same general physical neighborhood which in such a large city as Paris is too large a coincidence to easily overlook.

And of course I watched the French language version.
Super Reviewer
July 24, 2012
While it might be short in length, A Cat In Paris nonetheless proves a movie length doesn't matter when it comes to quality.

A Cat In Paris is about a cat who lives a secret life as a cat burglar's aide must come to the rescue of Zoe, the little girl he lives with, after she falls into a gangster's clutches. The plot is simple and to point which works for in it favors. It tells an original well and in a time when are rehashing old ideas this is a breath of fresh air. It never gets to dark yet it effectively adds a sense of the danger to what the characters go through. Despite it short length it does have a acceptable amount of back story and character development. It has some jokes that will make you laugh, especially the idiotic gangsters. The animation itself is well done and the visual style is wonderful to look at when in motion. The music score is very good, it has that noir feel it which I welcome. I add that the original titles translate to A Cat's Life, but for some reason changed the title to A Cat In Paris in English speaking country. It'll definitely be over you before know it, but it's worth a watch.

A Cat In Paris is short on it length, but it makes for it with quality story telling, a very good musical score, and gorgeous animation.
Super Reviewer
March 8, 2013
A fun but forgettable French animated movie, A Cat in Paris isn't really extraordinary in any way and it has a few cheesy moments, but it's funny and exciting enough to make for a pretty harmless entertaining movie.
Super Reviewer
May 25, 2012
No wonder this French film was Best Animated Feature Oscar 2012 nominee! Beautiful and stylishly done -- a sweet story of a cat that leads a double life. Some holes in the plot but that doesn't detract the film from being a visual feast complete with a great jazzy soundtrack and a compelling story. Watch out for its great sweeps and strong detailing of the Paris skyline and the Notre Dame!
Super Reviewer
October 14, 2012
A charming French animation, recognised by the Academy with a nomination nod, with a fresh take in traditional paint cartooning, a great soundtrack and plenty of suspense, is above all stylish and captivating for children and growups alike.
Super Reviewer
February 6, 2012
Good but not great, A Cat In Paris is a short, yet extremely tight film about a cat and cat-burglar. The animation is done well enough not to distract, but in comparison to where animation is at, even hand-drawn animation, it does not compare.
August Seria
Super Reviewer
½ January 26, 2012
Simple as it looks, it's still undeniably funny and beautifully animated with new tricks that kept me entertained from the first minute to the last.
Super Reviewer
November 18, 2012
So that's what happens when France sticks to its roots for an animated film. Wonderful!
Bram S.
Super Reviewer
½ May 25, 2012
Although it didn't reach my expectations, I still enjoyed A Cat in Paris mainly because the animation is beautiful, the characters very likable, and the story quite intriguing.

However, I do think that this movie could have been better. I didn't really like that there wasn't much music in the movie (it made some scenes that could have been really good, merely good.). Also, there were times when the villains seemed a bit too silly and, as a result, it didn't feel as much like the main character was in real danger.

But, in spite of my quibbles, A Cat in Paris is still a good movie that I think should be watched.
½ May 17, 2014
great old time animation and a fun story to watch . a thrill to see and a delight for the hole family
December 2, 2012
Highly stylized so I was drawn to it. Its charming and interesting and it works because of the shorter run-time and its certainly worth the watch but it wasn't as out-of-the-box nor memorable as I had hoped.
January 10, 2013
This is a sweet little film. As long as one doesn't go into it expecting more than what it is (for example there is not a lot of character development or depth, but remember it's only 65 minutes long), one won't be disappointed. The cat is a central figure but the heart of the story is the little girl, Zoe, who is mute because her father was murdered. Her relationship with her mom and with the thief are very satisfying.
½ January 7, 2013
A nice short French animated feature with a good story behind it. Every character seemed to know karate.
November 28, 2012
Nominated for a Best Animated Film by the Academy in 2011, the French crime caper film A Cat in Paris is a pretty-to-look at traditional painted animated film but little more. The story skews adult although there is nothing a younger audience cannot see here and it is probably this very reason (a cartoon for grown-ups) that it ended up getting the Academy recognition (much like last year's Chico and Rita). I am not the biggest fan of this drawing style (hate to admit it ... but it is the breasts of the female characters in this style that I dislike -- they are just c's drawn onto a page) and some of the story rather annoyed me -- uhm, speak up Zoe! The film is pretty low-key and there isn't a whole lot to recommend but this is watchable.
½ November 21, 2012
The setting is great, the animation style is great, but the story and dialogue are too kid-centric for adults. While some of the content (champagne, smoking) earns "Une vie de chat" a PG-rating and may seem like it wasn't intended for kids, consider the Parisian culture and these things make sense in the setting. At first, I thought that there was too much Cat and not enough Paris, but the second half of the movie is awesome, satisfying that Paris fix. The animation during the blackout is incredibly cool and the gargoyles on Notre Dame add so much to the story and atmosphere. "Une vie de chat" has a lot to offer but, while adults can enjoy this film, this is more of a good way to introduce kids to suspense films.
½ July 20, 2012
An impeccably animated French import, directing duo Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol's feline thriller surprised many upon the announcement of its Oscar nomination. Despite not receiving a limited release in the states, coupled with the fact it lacked even a U.S distributor, it usurped mainstream favorites such as Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin, along with the admittedly mediocre Pixar sequel Cars 2, and the sadly underestimated and seemingly already forgotten hand drawn gem Winnie the Pooh. Similar to the situation in 2009, where the also hand drawn Celtic fable Secret of Kells appeared out of nowhere to claim a nomination, many were curious as to whether this absolutely independent outsider of the Hollywood system was of any real quality, or simply the Academy championing a small and forgettable feature for no irrefutable reason. It's because of this that I've been enthusiastically waiting for the film's eventual domestic release; curiosity as to whether it deserves the recognition and slight fame the nomination brought. Now, after having viewed the film, though I'm glad this small foreign feature received its 15 seconds of fame, I'm not sure if it necessarily deserved the nomination. Despite excellent hand drawn animation, the plot is a bit of a mess, and the film is too short (70 minutes) to leave much of an impact. Though I'm glad I finally saw it, after coming from nowhere to become one of my most anticipated films of the year, I'd definitely consider it a disappointment.

Grade: C+
Page 1 of 13