The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

Cats slaps

Senior members of the WCC staff pose as cats from the musical. Graphic courtesy of Janitza Luna

On Saturday, January 11th, we made the perilous trek all the way to Regal Edwards West Covina to see the infamous movie: Cats. We knew what we were walking into; we had read the scathing reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. Upon Googling showtimes, we were met with discomforting tags—“cringe-worthy,” “awkward,” “disturbing,” the list goes on. 

Yet despite all the warning signs, we thought, “What could be better than a movie adapted from a musical adapted from a book of poems by a man utterly infatuated with cats?” 

As it turns out, there are hundreds of better movies. Maybe even thousands. Our first grievance: the cinematography. Most movies have very specific styles of cinematography. For example, Wes Anderson always moves the camera with slow, side-to-side movements to create a calm, symmetrical feeling throughout the movie. However, Cats moves in all different directions. It shakes, slides, bumps, and turns. The chaotic movements left us feeling dizzy and confused rather than satisfied. 

Trying to adjust our eyes to the point of view of a cat made it difficult to focus on the overwhelming amount of characters. The movie is centered around Victoria, an abandoned cat – played by Francesca Howard, a principal dancer in the Royal Ballet – who has just arrived in the territory of the Jellicle Cats. She travels through different houses and meets Grizabella, Mr. Mistoffelees, Jennyanydots, Macavity, James Corden in cat form, Taylor Swift in cat form, a gray cat, and so many more cats. How are we supposed to remember every single cat when none of them bring any substance to the movie? 

Each cat performs a song and dance to “show off their talent” to a supreme orange cat called Old Deuteronomy. Out of the 20 songs performed, we can only appreciate two: “Mr. Mistoffelees” and “Memory.” For a Tony award-winning musical and original score, it is rather unfortunate that only two Cats songs were kind-of enjoyable during the movie. Even “Memory,” which is sung by the amazing Jennifer Hudson and composed by six-time Tony Award winner Andrew Lloyd Webber, is rudely interrupted by Victoria. 

We left with many questions. What is a Jellicle cat? Did Grizabella just float to cat heaven? Why was Victoria snuggling with every cat? Did Mr. Mistoffelees get jealous? What would happen if Old Deut died? What do the second and third cat names mean??? 

Perhaps the thrill of Cats comes from the terrible dialogue, confusing images, and nonsense that is the epitome of Gen-Z humor. Either way, we thoroughly enjoyed the experience despite how uncomfortable it made us. 

Take this quiz to discover your inner spirit cat.

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About the Contributors
Amelie Cook, Copy Editor
Amelie Cook (‘20) is entering her third year in journalism and is ecstatic for her new position as Copy Editor. Amelie balances her time in journalism with being a Day Student Prefect and babysitter on the weekends. She spent most of her summer babysitting amazing kids and visiting family when she got the chance. As a DSP, she is responsible for improving day student life and hosting fun events on campus. She loves listening to her favorite artist Bazzi and reading murder mystery books. The secret to Amelie's boundless enthusiasm is to sleep—a lot. Once awake, she focuses her energy on environmental issues as she believes society should put more emphasis on combating climate change.
Emma Lin, Editor of Culture & Lifestyle
Emma Lin (‘20) will be entering her senior year at Webb. Embracing her new role as the Editor of Culture & Lifestyle for the Webb Canyon Chronicle, Emma hopes to approach more articles with an angle and drive her topics towards a compelling focus. Having lived in both California and Hong Kong growing up, Emma’s experience of contrasting cultures and lifestyles prove that she is indeed the right person for the job. Outside of the classroom, Emma is a devoted environmentalist and founder of the Environmental Club, which makes it no surprise that her favorite class is AP Environmental Science. In her free time, Emma enjoys dancing, watching movies and spending time with friends around Southern California. Apart from her leadership role at the Webb Canyon Chronicle, Emma is also the Vice President of her class and hopes to bring her class together and make the best out of their final year at Webb.
Janitza Luna, Editor-in-Chief
Standing at 5’0”ft tall, Janitza Luna ('20) embodies the persona of small and mighty. Born into the Aries astrological sign, her fiery determination and zeal are an awe-inspiring force. Janitza enjoys collaborating with her peers, as it gives her an opportunity to learn about other people’s  backgrounds. Her interest in sociology is the root to her reasoning and it allows her to develop human understanding because she is able to understand and appreciate the different perspectives of her peers. As a result, Janitza is an empathetic and kind being. She is also a fun person to be around; she shows her goofy and light-hearted personality through her creation of weird Snapchat videos and Spotify playlists.  

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