Wild cats populate the streets of Istanbul and in the seductive, magical “KEDi,” Istanbul native Ceyda Torun pays attention to both the burgeoning metropolis and its feline fauna. Tens or even hundreds of thousands of cats have roamed the city for centuries, and Torun and her crew spend long days (and nights) to find the most charismatic exemplars, selecting a half-dozen “characters” to augment the larger census. Then there’s the fluent cat’s-eye-view camerawork, treading the stones and turning the side streets from only a few inches above the ground, fluidly ambling, leaping, rushing in the path of these creatures. The love of Istanbul residents for cats inescapably reflects back on the city, and well, it’s nearly impossible not to love this fine first feature. Imagine your favorite online cat video, multiply by hundreds. “KEDi” is a ravishing beauty. Here, KEDi, KEDi, KEDi! 79m. (Ray Pride)
“Kedi” opens Friday, February 24 at the Music Box, expanding on March 3 to Landmark Renaissance in Highland Park.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published later this year.