Catwoman is a cinematic achievement.
The movie was released on the heels of the success of Toby McGuire’s Spider-Man 2. The X-Men franchise was in full swing. Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins was a year away. The comic book bug was upon us. This little nugget fit snug in the early days of superhero films.
The uncanny dialogue blasted with cat puns, the editing that makes you nauseous, the late afternoon sun no matter what time of day it is in what’s assumed to be New York City — it’s the most accurate depiction of everyday life I’ve seen on screen.
Halle Berry as Patience Phillips/Catwoman delivers. Her love interest, Tom Lone, played by Benjamin Bratt, is more than just a pretty face. Sharon Stone as big bad Laurel Hedare is cunning. Pitof (single-name directors rock) outdid himself.
Filled with stellar action and unprecedented visual effects, it’s worth noting the basketball scene around the 35 minute mark.
“One on one?” asks Todd, the coolest kid on the court. (I know this because of the beanie).
Catwoman Basketball Scene
These kids just love to watch grown adults play one-on-one. Who can blame them?
Patience is a magician with the ball. She swoops, spins, and jumps off the wall —something she regularly did as a world-class child athlete.
They each take off their jackets. It’s time to get down to business. Tom puts on a dribbling clinic worthy of an NBA contract.
The back and forth action in the post is scintillating. Neither can get an advantage until Patience throws a bullet into Tom’s stomach. Just some good ole family fun.
Patience drives from the top of the key, does her best Michael Jordan impression, and goes in for one of those “I dunked but didn’t touch the rim” dunks over Tom for the only bucket of the sequence.
His feet were set.
It’s not about winning or losing, though. The spirit of the game is all about fun, and it’s hard to argue that Patience is the most fun player out there.
Berry’s performance was outstanding enough to earn her a Razzie. She delivered a light-hearted acceptance speech, her Best Actress Oscar for Monster’s Ball in hand, thanking everyone from Warner Bros to all 20 writers for this train wreck of a project. In all its glory, the cringe film has been called one of the worst movies ever made.
My sole judgement of a Catwoman performance is based on their ability to cook in the post. Patience Phillips takes the cake on that one.