Every other time Roo and I have watched a movie together, I’m in the rocking chair and she’s on my lap. Our priorities — our interests in this pastime — barely overlap. Not this time. Kedi is a delightful documentary about the cats of Istanbul: not quite feral, not quite tame, they survive between the cracks. It reached out from the screen and grabbed her.

I wondered if Roo would be curious. I didn’t anticipate she’d be transfixed.

As soon as the meowing started, Roo hurried over to the screen: What’s going on? I, a creature of words, needed subtitles to understand the often profound observations and insights of the people who care for Istanbul’s cats; but evidently cats all speak the same language. When kittens came on, with their urgent baby mews, Roo craned, searching: Where are they?  I was reminded of my sister and me when our family got its first television, peering around the dials looking for the tiny people who must be inside.

Kedi is a pleasure whether or not you live with a cat, but if you do, it may be a unique domestic adventure.

As one Istanbul cat fan observed: Cats know there is a God. Dogs think people are God, but cats understand people are only the middlemen.

 

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