The Razzies, an annual “celebration” of the worst movies released in a year, a sort of anti-Oscars, if you will, were cancelled this year, just like everything else going on right now. Still, the Razzies announced their winners this week, and the most prizes went to Cats, no surprise, making it officially the worst movie 2019, I guess. It is definitely a bad movie, in many ways, perhaps the WORST movie, but I don’t think Cats deserves Razzies. Partly because the Razzies go for the obvious picks every year and Cats is so obvious, there’s no surprise or curiosity in understanding this decision. But it also doesn’t deserve Razzies because while Cats is bad, it’s imaginatively bad. Cats is bad because a series of people made completely insane choices, and then hundreds of other people committed wholeheartedly to those insane choices. Cats is so uniquely bad, it deserves an award of its own.
I went to summer camp as a kid and at the end of camp, we all got a cabin prize for doing something over the summer worthy of note. There was the obvious stuff like “Best Athlete” and “Most Helpful”, but there were also a series of awards given to kids that didn’t excel at sports or particularly like helping others, awards like “Best Joker” and “Biggest Bonfire Starter”. This is the kind of award Cats deserves. Cats is not “good” or “bad” by any traditional meaning of those words. It doesn’t fit into that neat binary. Cats is the odd kid out at summer camp and it deserves an odd-kid-out award. Instead of Razzies, we should be giving Cats ribbons in “Most bonkers vision” and “Worst cinematography for choreography”. We should be acknowledging that as terrible as Cats is, and it is VERY terrible, it is also uniquely terrible, and that makes it special and even noteworthy. No movie is bad like Cats is bad, and if it’s going to win awards for its badness, then it should win special awards designed specifically for all the unique ways in which it fails. Cats doesn’t deserve Razzies, because the Razzies aren’t good enough for Cats.