Monday, October 18, 2010
Say the words Cat People and you either conjure up images Hoarders or Paul Schrader's sexed-up 1982 feature film of the same name. Lucky for you though we're not focusing on any packed-to-the-gills interiors seen on cable TV. Instead we gave Schrader's remake of the 1942 original a second chance and boy is it chock-full of some beautifully composed shots of interiors. Set in New Orleans, Cat People follows Irena, one of the last of an ancient race of panther/human hybrids left to figure out how to negotiate her animal instinct with her modern-girl need for love. Totally relatable, we know.
As you'd expect, Irena is immediately drawn to the New Orleans Zoo where she can catch up with her cat-brethren. This ostensible stand-in for the real-life Audubon Zoo, is full of nice early twentieth century touches: intricate brickwork, inhumane but gorgeous steel cages, specimen jars and spiral staircases.
Although the film takes place in New Orleans, there are shockingly few classic New Orleans-style 18th century structures, but they do make a few notable appearances.
And in a stand out scene - decor-wise - fellow cat-lover, Oliver, takes Irena on a date to an oyster house where cyan chairs, blue lighting and floor to ceiling subway tiling had us wanting to completely rethink our own kitchen concept.
Speaking of cyan, Paul Schrader's palette for Cat People is the fairly unique combo of red-orange/cyan... just like 3-D glasses. Except this movie isn't in 3-D. All the same, it still provides for some stunning shots.
Cat People runs 118 minutes and is available on DVD and Blueray from Universal.
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