Curated by Deepti Rao
All the crazy cat people in the house put your hands up ✋
ALL CATS ARE GREY IN THE DARK (2019) by Lasse Linder is an intimate portrait of Christian and his two Scottish fold cats Katyusha and Marmelade, that makes us sigh and squirm at the same time. The trio are inseparable and are a reminder that family is what you make it out to be.
The young Swedish/Swiss filmmaker’s work blurs the line between documentary and narrative fiction which can be seen in this film as well. It is so intimate that we are sometimes left questioning if some scenes were indeed scripted. The cats perch themselves perfectly on Christian’s shoulder and sit like him patiently at a bar in a ski resort makes you think that there must have been an animal trainer on set!
The controlled framing of the film echoes Christian’s obsession with his cats – they are his only focus. But filling his life up with his cats doesn’t hide the loneliness that exists. Christian’s character also plays on the notions of masculinity as one wouldn’t expect a stern-looking elderly gentleman to be fawning over his cats the way he does.
What strikes me about this film is how poignantly the main character is crafted or portrayed. In 17 minutes, we know the world of this character and yet are left wondering about the moments in his life that lead up to the span of time that we see in the film – why does he live alone? Does he have any human friends? Is this what he was like as a child? The filmmaker’s style of storytelling gives you a lot and yet leaves your imagination enough room to round it off.