Kedi is a beautiful, heart-warming documentary film about how the good people of Istanbul care for the city’s hundreds of thousands of semi-stray cats, but it is also about how the cats are healing the thousands of emotionally wounded citizens of Istanbul.
Kedi is filmed with an innovative “cat cam” which allowed the filmmakers to film the cats at street level, giving viewers intimate access to the cast of feline characters. Truly up close and personal, you see cats at our brave, resourceful, lovable best.
I found it engrossing how the filmmakers took the time to allow the unique characteristics of the cats you meet develop and unfold. You’ll meet such characters as: Sari—the Hustler, Bengü—the Lover, Psikopat—the Psycho, Deniz—the Social Butterfly, Aslan Parçasi—the Hunter, Duman—the Gentleman, and Gamsiz—the Player. My personal favorite was Sari, the hustling mother we meet in the first few frames of the film, but I loved them all. Personally, I think this cast got robbed at Oscar time, which just goes to show you, Hollywood still has a loooong way to go when it comes to diversity.
Lest you think this film is all about cats (although there’d be nothing wrong with it if it was…) you’ll also get up close and personal with some of the heroes who’ve taken an interest in these plucky street cats, truly kind people with soft spots and big hearts. People who aren’t afraid that if you feed a stray you’ll never get rid of it. These people have opened their hearts to these street cats, and neither party wants to go anywhere. It’s a touching example of urban symbiosis!
Warning: if you watch the movie with someone like my Josie, you will be subjected to involuntary cries of, “Oh, how cute!” and “How adorable!” and “I can’t stand it!” or my personal favorite, “I can’t even!” (PS. what does that even mean??) prompting you to say, “They’re just cats, Lady, get a grip. And they’re not even as cute as I am, right?…Right?!” Followed by an uncomfortable silence. Oh, well. Trust me, it’s worth it.
The moral of the film: go out right now and get yourself a cat, preferably from a shelter. It’ll be good for everyone’s mental and emotion well-being. Unless you’re allergic to cats. In which case, perhaps your physical well-being is more important, but that’ll be your call.
In a word, it was sheer purr-fection!
Kedi was in theaters February 10, 2017, and has been available on DVD since November 14, 2017. I recommend that you go out and rent a copy right now!
Lily, the Literary Kitty