The Curse of the Cat People (1944)

ROBERT WISE, GUNTHER VON FRITSCH

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  USA, 1944.  .  Screenplay by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by , .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .

The studio pushed producer Val Lewton for a sequel to the surprise hit Cat People, and as he had no interest in providing one instead put a misleading title on what is actually a lovely supernatural story about a girl dealing with social isolation.  Its mere thread connecting it to Jacques Tourneur’s original is that the couple who got together at the end of the first film are now raising their daughter while trying not to focus on the subject of the father’s late wife ().  Little Amy (, in a remarkably good performance) runs into a spooky old house where she is given a ring by a mysterious old lady; she treats it like a wishing charm and asks it for a friend, after which Simon appears to provide companionship.  What the connection is between the old woman and Simon is never explained, nor is there a specific plot turn that Simon contributes to other than a brief scene involving the old lady’s bitter and unhappy daughter, but does it matter?  For all its B-level plotting (and brief sixty-nine minute running time), the film is so well directed, acted and shot (including terrific visual effects and incredibly beautiful produciton design) that it goes down beautifully for anyone who knows not to actually wait for either a curse or a cat person to appear.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s