Catwoman (film)

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Catwoman poster.jpg

A film from 2004 starring Halle Berry. It has a lot of star power, but disappointed most of the people who saw it -- especially the Batman fans.

Patience Philips is a shy secretary with few friends who works at the Hedare cosmetics company; she is killed by her boss' scheming wife Laurel after she learns that the company is developing a youth serum with side effects considerably worse than anything sold over-the-counter should have. Patience is subsequently brought back to life and given special, cat-like abilities by Midnight, an Egyptian Mau she earlier encountered and attempted to rescue. Now she must stop Laurel and come to terms with the changes brought on by her abilities as Catwoman.

This film is the victim of Misaimed Marketing, or, perhaps, just misaimed titling. Or maybe it was even deliberate to hook people in. People were attracted to the film because they were hoping to see the Catwoman of the Batman comics - but Halle Berry's character is not her in any way, shape, or form. Since the film is an action picture with supernatural elements, there weren't enough bright spots to overcome the ire that the bait-and-switch caused among Batman (and Catwoman) fans; the negative word-of-mouth sunk the film. It couldn't even claim originality due to heavily borrowing elements from The Crow, the 1989 Batman, and Daredevil (the romantic basketball game was practically lifted verbatim).

The comic this movie was (supposedly) based on can be found here.

Tropes used in Catwoman (film) include:

"There are three good things in Catwoman: Halle Berry's face, Halle Berry's body, and Halle Berry's costume. Those are first-rate. Everything else in this movie is unbelievably bad."

    • Also, there's a scene toward the end where the Big Bad is lathering herself up with the poisonous makeup cream. Distractingly sexy.
    • One wonders if anyone ever told Mr. Ebert that much of the time, the body he was enjoying was Halle Berry's stunt double... her male stunt double.
  • Follow the Leader: There's a lot about the film that screams out being a blatant attempt to cash in on the success of the Spider-Man movie of two years earlier. Especially the CG of Spidey web-swinging and wall-crawling... the filmmakers were so desperate to recreate that feel that they CGed Catwoman walking around.
  • Fountain of Youth: With a twist; continued use deadens the nerves and makes the skin like "marble," but if you stop using it, your face will decay.
  • In Name Only: Go read a Catwoman comic. Any Catwoman comic. Then compare it to this movie. See any resemblance whatsoever? No? Neither did anyone else.
  • Irony: It's entirely possible that this bomb of a movie saved Halle's career rather than sinking it. After her Oscar win, Halle had developed a reputation for being a raging diva. However, when this movie tanked, it served as a kick in the gut and brought her back down to Earth. Her accepting the Golden Raspberry award in person didn't hurt, either.
    • Save that she accepted it while waving her Oscar around and blaming her being in the movie on her agent. Most of the humility she displayed was apparently just face-saving, and her career dying out anyway several years later would seem to indicate she never really learned her lesson.
  • May Contain Evil: Evil cosmetics. Yes, really.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Catwoman, of course.
  • No One Could Survive That
  • Pet Homosexual: One of Patience's few friends is this.
  • The Power of Love: In a manner of speaking.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot: This happens on Patience's second date with Tom.
  • Shallow Love Interest: Tom Lone. Really, what else do we know about him other than he's in love with Patience? He's a cop. Although even that may not be saying much...
  • Shout-Out: When being educated about the Catwomen through time, one of the pictures thrown down is from Batman Returns, a shot of Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman.
  • Shrinking Violet: Patience at the beginning of the film.
  • Spy Catsuit: Patience wears one at first. She later ditches it for a somewhat less tasteful outfit.
  • Stealth Sequel: To the Batman films, notably, Batman Returns. Her origin is identical to the one played by Michelle Pfeiffer, the Catwoman persona is said to be a Legacy Character, and in the pictures of former "Catwomen", we see Michelle Pfeiffer's original character.
  • Stripperiffic: Much of the hatred from the movie, at least at first, stemmed from the fact that Berry's costume looked less like the real Catwoman and more like some kind of porno/Drag Queen version thereof. The making-of material reveals (no, not visually) that the top to the costume had a tendency to pop off -- so often that it actually became annoying to everyone on the set.
  • Theme Song Power Up
  • Your Cheating Heart: George Hedare is shown having a mistress, which his wife already knows about.