Monthly Archives: September 2016

Cat Village (1966)

British Pathé

Synopsis: The focus of this newsreel segment is a village built for stray cats in Heydon, near Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England.

Reality Cats: Several cats are seen living within the wired enclosure which is complete with tiny cat houses and other ammenities, such as milk, food, cat trees, swings, benches and a heated clubhouse.  Not to mention fresh straw!

Cat Village - kittens inside colorful little house

Cat Village - cats sleeping on top of little houses

Cat Village - black cat on cat tree

Cat Village - cat village in Heydon, England

Some of the cats are seen batting each other during meal time, revealing that this little cat paradise may not be a utopia but it was certainly better than scraping by on the streets.

Cat Village - cats fighting over milk

Cat Village - cats fighting over food

Final Mewsings: It’s Habitat for Felinity!


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Batman Returns (1992)

Batman Returns DVD

Warner Bros.
Starring:
 Michelle Pfeiffer, Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito
Directed by: Tim Burton

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

Synopsis: An unscrupulous businessman named Max Shreck (Christopher Walken) teams up with the Penguin (Danny DeVito) to carry out a plot to steal all of Gotham City’s power, unless Batman (Michael Keaton) can stop them despite interference or help from the mysterious Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer).

Kitty Carnage Warning! At the beginning of the film the Penguin is born.  As a child he is portrayed as a vicious creature which is never seen but is obviously loathed by his parents.  In one shot the couple are looking at a small box in which the infant is enclosed.  A white cat is sniffing around outside the box.

Batman Returns - white cat sniffs around Penguin's cage

Suddenly a small deformed hand reaches out and grabs the cat’s tail, pulling it quickly inside the box.  It’s obvious in this shot the cat is fake.

Batman Returns - fake white cat pulled into Penguin's cage

Cat Cattle Call: Catwoman begins as a mild-mannered secretary named Selina Kyle who works for the nefarious Shreck.  She lives a lonely life with only a black cat named Miss Kitty as a loving friend.

Batman Returns - Seline Michelle Pfeiffer with black cat on counter

Unfortunately Selina accidentally uncovers the plans behind Shreck’s power-stealing scheme and he pushes her out a window to her death.  As she lies on the ground, cats appear from everywhere and surround her.  Reportedly tuna and a clicker were used to draw the cats who were released simultaneously from their kennels.

Batman Returns - Seline Michelle Pfeiffer with black cat licking her face

Batman Returns - Seline Michelle Pfeiffer on ground with cats all around her

Batman Returns - Orange cat chewing on Selina's bloody fingers

Selina wakes up suddenly.

Batman Returns - Seline Michelle Pfeiffer on ground opens eyes with cat beside her

Returning home, Selina is a changed person.  Cats begin to convene in her apartment.

Batman Returns - tabby cat enters Selina's apartment

Batman Returns - black cat in Selina's apartment

She sews together a cat suit and Catwoman is born.

Batman Returns - cats gather around window as Selina Michelle Pfeiffer sews outfit apartment

Batman Returns - cats around window with Catwoman Michelle Pfeiffer

In one scene Catwoman meets with Penguin to scheme against Batman.  The black cat who was with her in the beginning of the film appears again in this scene.

Batman Returns - Catwoman Michelle Pfeiffer with Penguin Danny DeVito and black cat on bed

Catwoman throws Penguin’s bird into her mouth and so Penguin threatens to kill her cat.  She quickly releases the bird.

Batman Returns - Catwoman Michelle Pfeiffer opens mouth to release bird with Penguin Danny DeVito threatening black cat on bed

At the end of the film Bruce Wayne is being driven home by Alfred (Michael Gough) and he thinks he sees Catwoman.  He gets out of the car but only finds the black cat.

Batman Returns - Bruce Wayne Michael Keaton holding black cat in alley

Bruce Wayne returns to the car and they drive away, Bruce holding the cat on his lap.

Batman Returns - Bruce Wayne Michael Keaton holding black cat in back of car

Final Mewsings: Both cats and women are complicated creatures.

Many thanks to our friend T.j. Dotson for reminding us of this film!


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The L-Shaped Room (1962)

The L-Shaped Room poster

British Lion Film Corporation
Starring:
 Leslie Caron, Cicely Courtneidge
Directed by: Bryan Forbes

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

Synopsis: Jane Fosset (Leslie Caron) is a young French woman who arrives in London poor and pregnant and takes a flat in a seedy building with an interesting collection of characters.

Featured Feline: One of Jane’s neighbors is an aging stage performer named Mavis (Cicely Courtneidge).  Mavis lives with her black cat Benji.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji sitting on chair

In one scene Mavis has asked neighbor Toby (Tom Bell) to pick up a tin of cat food since Benji has been off his food for a bit.  But when we see Benji he appears to be very well fed.  Mavis puts the food down for him and then grabs him before he can begin and makes him perform a “trick” by jumping through her arms to get to the dish.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji jumping through Mavis' arms to get food animated gif

Benji is seen several times throughout the film, often sitting on Mavis’ bed.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji sitting on bed

One time Benji tries to sneak out of the flat but Mavis stops him with her foot.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji trying to sneak out of flat

Benji keeps Mavis company while she is working on various projects.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji sitting in Cicely Courtneidge Mavis' lap

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji sitting at table with Cicely Courtneidge Mavis

In another scene Jane visits and asks how Benji has been doing.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji petted by Leslie Caron Jane

The fondess Mavis feels for Benji throughout the film is very touching.

The L-Shaped Room - black cat Benji being held by Cicely Courtneidge Mavis

Final Mewsings: Older women and cats keep each other company.


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Modern Romance (1981)

Modern Romance poster

Columbia Pictures Corporation
Starring:
 Albert Brooks, Kathryn Harrold
Directed by: Albert Brooks

Synopsis: Robert Cole (Albert Brooks) is a film editor who tries to handle being in relationship but continuously delves into paranoia and self-doubt.

Purr Blur: In one scene Robert drives to an apartment building to pick up a woman he spontaneously asked out.  As he exits the car and walks to the building a black cat can be seen walking down a path and then beneath Cole’s parked car.

Modern Romance - black cat walking on path

Modern Romance - black cat walking by car

Final Mewsings: Cats avoid complicated relationships.


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Cat Show (2014)

Cat Show poster

Filmbuff
Directed by:
 Donna Lipowitz

Synopsis: An entertaining documentary which follows a young woman named Carly who raises and shows her Himalayan cats at cat shows across the U.K. and in Europe.

Reality Cats: Carly owns several Himalayans and shows a couple of them but the focus of the documentary is on Tango who is accruing numerous points and has a chance at an international title.

Cat Show - Himalayan cat Tango

Cat Show - Himalayan cat Tango being judged

Carly happens to be blind, has a bright and charming sense of humor and is genuinely passionate about breeding and showing her cats.

Cat Show - Himalayan cat Tango being brushed by Carly

Cat Show - Carly at home with her Himalayan cats

The film takes an interesting look at the world of competitive cat shows and the cat fanciers who attend them, so of course there are numerous cats shown throughout.

Cat Show - white cat with black eyebrows

Cat Show - orange tabby cat with white

A very sweet documentary well worth watching if you love cats.

Cat Show - Himalayan cats at home

Final Mewsings: Every cat deserves to be a favorite cat!


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