Cat Daddies


Reviewed by: Tony Sullivan

Cat Daddies
"In a way the film is as intangible as cat dander but it’s nice to see that nice people still inhabit this crazy world of ours" | Photo: Eric Yang

A swift google of “men with cats” yields:

“Want to attract women? Keep your cat out of your dating profile” CNN June 22, 2020 from a study by Colorado State University

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Is It Weird for a Man to Have a Cat?

Somewhere a computer algorithm is calculating the next 10 years of purchasing behaviour based on whether you own a cat or not, somewhere else the potential lodestar of your life has swiped left your profile picture because of the cat in it. In this strange world in which we live where a trending topic can range from a world war to whether Brittany is in her birthday suit, it is no surprise that the mere ownership of a cat can dictate and delineate your life.

Cat Daddies is an expose of the lives of this marginalised and stigmatised group, containing excerpts from the lives of eight or nine cat daddies, give or take and their non-feline relationships.

The narrative introduces us to the human and feline participants and their geographical location. First there’s Nathan an actor and influencer and his cat quartet – he’s on Instagram. Then Jeff, a software engineer, who takes his cat rambling.

Then we go to New York and David and his cat, Lucky, and here the tone of this tale becomes a little more serious as we study the plight of an ailing homeless man on the streets of New York City on the brink of a pandemic.

Next up, Flame, the cat of a South Carolina fire station. Then on the road with Tora the Trucker Cat and her owner David. Tora is also an internet celebrity. Will deals with stray cats on a professional basis. Ryan, a stuntman, lives with the huge Maine Coon cat, Toodles. Finally, Peter completes our line up with his cat, Keys, who has a superhero alias as internet sensation #goalkitty! The documentary narrative weaves in and out of these cat (ec)centric lives, gently and skillfully involving the viewer as these cat tales play out.

The humans here are beset with a variety of problems, the cats, however, are all perfect. One suspects that these cats change their own litter and have never even considered leaving a decapitated sparrow on your doorstep or vomit on your pillow. The human stories (bar one or two) are trite in the grand scheme of civilization but do exert a gentle tug on the heartstrings.

Compare and contrast with the BBC’s Secret Life Of The Cat documentary, which takes a more objective view of our feline friends. Although most of the subject cats here are rugged outdoors types most US cats tend to be kept completely indoors (63% to 26% or so apparently).

The end credits yield some good information:

“Shot on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K,” it says, and the documentary is a gorgeous advert for this budget camera, with it you can see the soul in the eyes of these cats. Go get one, make films!

And then...

"Cats are safest and happiest indoors. Most cats cannot be trained on a leash and should never be forced.

Roaming cats face numerous dangers and can be a threat to nearby wildlife. Please take special care, and notice your surroundings whenever taking a housecat outdoors.

Owning a pet is not for everyone. Pets are a long term commitment.

Consider adopting or fostering from your local animal shelter or rescue organization.

Please spay/neuter and microchip your pets."

Indeed. Amen.

In a way the film is as intangible as cat dander but it’s nice to see that nice people still inhabit this crazy world of ours. This is not the documentary we wanted but it’s probably the documentary we need. Time to change the pillow case.

Reviewed on: 12 Oct 2022
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A portrait of men whose lives have been changed by the love of their cats.

Director: Mye Hoang

Year: 2022

Runtime: 89 minutes

Country: US


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