Kedi is a film about cats in Istanbul that’s been described as the “Citizen Kane of cat documentaries”, and it’s showing for the next couple of weeks at ACMI in Melbourne! We know what we’re doing this weekend. Via the Guardian:
Film-maker Ceyda Torun grew up in Istanbul until the age of 11 and is now based in Los Angeles. Her feature-length documentary debut Kedi (Turkish for “cat”) is about seven of the street cats that roam Istanbul. They are cared for collectively by the community in exchange for mouse catching, affection and “good energy”. Each cat has a distinct personality: Sari, “the Hustler”, is a tabby who inventively seeks out food for her kittens; Psikopat, “the Psycho”, is a fierce black and white cat with a strong sense of territory; Gamsiz, “the Player”, is a resourceful short-haired who has charmed the neighbourhood baker with his moxie.
A surprise box-office hit (the film has made more than $2.7m in the US), Kedi has a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and was described by IndieWire as “the Citizen Kane of cat documentaries”.
-What did growing up with street cats add to your childhood?
I was a happy-to-be-alone kind of child and the cats were companions in the heavily imaginary little world I would create in our back yard. I learned a lot from them, about my own strength, my own physical capabilities. One cat came into my life when I was seven; she stayed on and kept giving birth to kittens and I took care of them. She’d walk on the top of a wall and I’d walk behind her and I’d do all these things I may not have had the courage to do without her. I also learned about companionship and setting boundaries – cats definitely set boundaries for you.