Cat city

A poetic look at the cats of Istanbul

Opens Friday, March 31. Pageant Theatre. Not rated.

Rated 3.0

Ceyda Torun’s charmingly poetic film about the multitudes of cats in her native city of Istanbul makes a nicely appointed addition to the tradition of the “city symphonies” genre of documentary. Kedi (the Turkish word for “cat”) is a kind of love letter to that city channeled through its hospitality toward its large, diverse and long-lived population of felines. Torun’s cinematographers (Alp Korfali and Charlie Wuppermann) show a sharp and affectionate eye for individual cats comporting themselves in a variety of urban settings. And the film as a whole has a rich sense of distinct individual character in its gallery of feline portraiture. The latter element is enhanced by the comments and remarks of the assorted city dwellers who show a keen appreciation of individual qualities in the cats who are, in effect, their friends and neighbors. As a result, Torun’s film also takes shape as a tribute to the cat-lovers of Istanbul.