Monthly Archives: August 2015

Puss in Boots (1934)

The Cartoons That Time Forget Volume 1 DVD

Celebrity Productions
Directed by:
 Ub Iwerks

Synopsis: A cat in boots is grateful when a young man saves his kittens, so he helps him to rescue a princess from an ogre.

Cartoon Cat: It’s not clear why this Puss is wearing boots but like other versions of the tale he is a very resourceful cat and quite clever.

Puss in Boots - Puss in Boots shakes hand with young man

Cat Burglars (Scene Stealers):  It’s Puss’ three little kittens which steal the show, however, tumbling about fighting and singing and being just generally adorable.

Puss in Boots - three kittens playing tic tac toe

The music in this piece (by Carl Stalling) is also catchy, especially when the meows are sung by some pussy willows!

Puss in Boots - pussy willows singing

As one might expect Puss saves the day by out-thinking the ogre much the same as in the original story.  All in all this is a very cute revamped version.

Puss in Boots - Puss in Boots smiling with kittens sticking out tongues

Final Mewsings: You don’t want kittens playing tic tac toe in your pants!


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Squirrel Keeps Cat Company (1957)

British Pathé

Synopsis: Newsreel footage from Dallas, Texas, shows a squirrel and a cat living together in the same house.

Reality Cat: The Hinckel house is the residence of Fred the squirrel and Sam the cat, who are seen together in the same room as the narrator explains their story.

Squirrel Keeps Cat Company Fred squirrel and Sam cat

Fred was brought into the house as a baby and Sam learned to accept him as a fellow resident.  The two are shown supposedly playing together, although Sam is basically just tolerating Fred and taking a few swipes at him.

Squirrel Keeps Cat Company Fred squirrel and Sam cat playing

In the end Sam is seen licking Fred.  Maybe just having a taste before the cameras are turned off?

Squirrel Keeps Cat Company Sam cat licking Fred squirrel

Final Mewsings: What cat wouldn’t want their own squirrel lick?


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The Blot (1921)

The Blot DVD

Lois Weber Productions
Starring:
 Margaret McWade, Claire Windsor, Louis Calhern
Directed by: Lois Weber

Cat Out of the Bag Alert!  This review contains some spoilers for this film!

Synopsis: Professor Griggs (Philip Hubbard) and his family strive to make ends meet on his meager salary while one of his wealthy students, Phil West (Louis Calhern), courts his daughter.  Also they watch as the Olesons, a shoemaker’s family next door, thrives.

Cat Burglars (Scene Stealers): Even though the Griggs family are poor they still keep a Maine Coon mama cat and her two kittens which is their daughter Amelia’s (Claire Windsor) only pets.  They are usually seen in the kitchen with Mrs. Griggs (Margaret McWade).

The Blot - Maine Coon mama cat with kitten

The Blot - Maine Coon mama cat

The mama cat is particularly involved in the story as Mrs. Griggs allows her to scrounge from the Olson’s garbage can.  This becomes a matter of contention with Mrs. Oleson, who sees the Griggs as being stuck up and stubborn.  Mrs. Olson chases the cat away from the garbage can when she finds out about it.

The Blot - Maine Coon mama cat with Mrs. Griggs at garbage can

Mrs. Griggs becomes desperate as she tries to find a way to feed her family, especially her ailing daughter Amelia.  In one shot she looks down at one of the kittens who looks up at her expectantly.

The Blot - kitten looking up

In the end their predicament becomes the concern of others, and even Mrs. Olson’s
heart grows as she moves her garbage can back over by the fence so the cat can scrounge.

The Blot - Maine Coon mama cat reaching for garage can lid

Final Mewsings: Cats are too proud to ask for handouts, especially when it’s just garbage.


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Loving (1970)

Loving DVD

Columbia Pictures Corporation
Starring:
 George Segal, Eva Marie Saint, Lorraine Cullen
Directed by: Irvin Kershner

Synopsis: Brooks Wilson (George Segal) is an artist not satisfied with his jobs or his life at home but who can’t seem to get it together when it comes to his mistress and his work.

Featured Feline: The Wilson family owns a big Maine Coon cat named Baby Lionel.  Baby Lionel is first seen lying on the bed with George’s wife Selma (Eva Marie Saint) as Brooks is preparing a camera while wearing a Union military uniform.

Loving - Baby Lionel Maine Coon cat on bed

What appears to be a possibly kinky scenario is actually Brooks taking a photo to use as a guide for a book cover he’s painting for a Civil War romance novel.  Baby Lionel remains on the bed while Brooks and Selma hug in pose, sleeping sounder than any cat realistically should!

Loving - Baby Lionel Maine Coon cat still on bed

Later Brooks walks by his daughter Lizzie (Lorraine Cullen) as she is sitting at a table.  Baby Lionel is on the table in front of her.  Brooks says good morning then leans over and picks up the cat to drop it on the floor, which makes Lizzie cry out with frustration.

Loving - Baby Lionel Maine Coon cat on table

Still later in the film Lizzie and her little sister Hannah (Cheryl Bucher) are having a staring contest.  Lizzie is holding Baby Lionel in her arms but then releases him.

Loving - Baby Lionel Maine Coon cat bring held by Lizzie during staring war

When their father enters he accidentally steps on the cat’s tail (this happens off screen).  The two girls scream that he did it on purpose and Lizzie runs to fetch the cat.  Hannah looks up at her father and says seriously, “You hate Baby Lionel!”  Lizzie carries Baby Lionel back into the room and gives her father a dirty look before she and Hannah exit with the cat.

Loving - Baby Lionel Maine Coon being carried by Lizzie

Final Mewsings: There wasn’t much loving between Brooks and Baby Lionel.


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Night Owls (1930)

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Starring:
 Oliver Hardy, Stan Laurel, Edgar Kennedy
Directed by: James Parrott

Synopsis: Laurel and Hardy are talked into robbing the home of the local police chief by Kennedy the cop so he can get in good with his boss again, only things don’t go exactly as planned.

Purr Blurs: There are two hilarious examples of purr blurs in this film.  The first one happens when Laurel is trying to climb over the wall surrounding the police chief’s home.  Just as he gets his arms over the top of the wall a cat races across them, scaring him into screaming and falling.

Night Owls - cat runs across Stan Laurel's arms

Later when Laurel and Hardy continue to make noises the Chief asks his man Meadows (James Finlayson) to see what’s causing the disturbance.  Meadows looks out the window in time to see two cats running along the top of the wall, one after the other.  After he informs the Chief that it’s the cats, Laurel and Hardy decide to start meowing like cats, leading to even more comical moments.

Night Owls - cat running along wall

Night Owls - second running along wall

Final Mewsings: The tops of walls are the cats’ highways.

Night Owls - Stan Laurel being scared by cat running along wall animated gif

Night Owls - cats running along wall animated gif


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