Talk about timing. Hillary loses the election, there’s a record-breaking Women’s March in Washington and then the week of a revitalised International Women’s Day, Catfight bitch slaps itself onto our screens. A post-feminist piece of backbiting, Onur Tukel’s hit-and-miss satire takes aim at a world of privileged women – which at the moment doesn’t appear to be that privileged at all. Sandra Oh plays Veronica Salt, a trophy wife whose husband is set to make a gleeful bundle out of the next war in the Middle-East. She’s a semi-alcoholic, cloying on her son, and offering advice on not being an artist but doing something that earns money.
With the exception of Jimmy Fallon, it’s hard to think of a single host of this type who isn’t actually providing articulate, whip and whip-smart commentary at the moment. The palpable hits on the other hand are bang on familiar targets of liberal self-hatred. Pretentious artists, war profiteers and tree-huggers all get some second-hand bile. Where the film does hit is with its leads who both fully commit to their despicable characters, revelling in their nastiness and enthusiastically punching each other in the face as frequently as circumstances allow. Their delivery elevates the material and towards the end threaten to round themselves out into something more like people. Sadly, Catfight never lands the knockout blow. Bring on the fart machine.
John Bleasdale | @drjonty