Posts Tagged ‘CatsandDogs’

Did you remember the Cats and Dogs movie from 2001?  This 2010 version is basically the same plot without so many humans involved in the film. Even a couple of the characters (Butch and Mr. Tinkles) are carryovers from the 2001 film, but it really doesn’t matter if you remember or not. The new rendition  is a pretty forgettable movie.

In spite of a few moments of homage to James Bond films (the opening credits), to the Hannibal Lekter films (Mr. Tinkles’ muzzled in Alcatraz), and to Mission Impossible (final scene), the plot is so slow and predictable as to be uninteresting for the parents and grandparents who must attend with the kids. The kids themselves may enjoy the action –but not all that much either. Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore (2010) did not leave my grandkids talking about the film at all—and that is the litmus test for me.

Just in case your kids do want to talk about the film, let me make some brief suggestions about topics that could develop into good conversations for you.

1. Revenge : What do you think about getting back at people for something they do to you? Lots of literature and lots of movies use revenge as the primary motivation. I bet you can name five or six films without even thinking hard—but what kind of world do we live in if everyone seeks revenge for the wrongs done to them?   That conversation can stay in your neighborhood or go all over the world. Ultimately, don’t we come back to God saying, “Revenge is mine,” and waving us off of revenge (Romans 12:19)?

2. People often do bad things because of bad things that happened to them. I don’t think that excuses badness, but it might turn “villains” into real people rather than just cartoon characters. Why does Kitty Galore want revenge? What if that accident had not happened? Would she have been as evil?  Maybe if someone had apologized, or bought her a beautiful fur coat as penance, or just loved her ugliness more . . . . What action could have changed the direction of her life?

3. Cats and dogs can live with each other! You could take this topic into race or alternative life styles, but for my grandkids, I’d leave it just where it was in the movie—boys and girls! My three grandsons—all  under 8–delight in terrorizing any girl of any size! I don’t know where this comes from, but we spend a lot of time teaching that girls are not objects to be pinched, chased, used as prisoners, scared with bugs, etc. Just seems to me that the younger they learn to respect girls, the better off they will be.

4. Why shouldn’t people try to crush the opposition, people who aren’t like them, or don’t believe like they do? It’s always to create a better world, isn’t it! This may be for kids a bit older, but they do hear a lot of this “crushing” talk from adults. Think about the “crushing” type comments they might overhear from you about the opposing political party, about people in different economic strata, about foreigners in our country, about . . . . you fill in the blank. To honor and respect people VERY different from us is challenging. Kids need to hear from you that “crushing the opposition” is rarely a Christian virtue.

It’s not a great film, but if you see it, at least you now have a few ideas for pretty important conversations with your kids.  That might be worth it.

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