The Fifth-Column Mouse (1943)

Warner Bros.
Starring:
 Mel Blanc
Directed by: I. Freleng

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

Synopsis: A cat persuades a mouse to trick the other mice into appeasing him in exchange for all the cheese the mouse wants.

Cartoon Cat: This film is actually a bit of World War II propaganda highlighting the dangers of working with the enemy. A group of mice play happily in a kitchen, even when a cat shows up at the window. One mouse is afraid but another convinces him the cat can’t get in.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat looking in window

Moments later the cat does get inside and all the mice scurry.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat ready to attack

The cat pretends to be a mousehole and gets the one stupid mouse to go in.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat pretending to be mousehole and stupid mouse

Preventing the mouse from escaping through a hole, the cat insists he won’t hurt him. Instead he promises him cheese in return for turning the others to his side. During this scene the cat’s face momentarily takes on the features of a highly stereotypical Japanese person.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat plugs hole so mouse can't dive in

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat holding mouse by tail

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat waving cheese in front of mouse

The mouse convices the others in song to serve the cat, which they do to great extent.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - mice waiting on black and white cat

It isn’t until the cat announces he feels like a mouse for dinner that the others run, leaving the stupid mouse behind.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat looking at menu surrounded by mice

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat eyeing mouse hungrily

Knowing the cat is truly their enemy, the mice rally to build a robot bulldog which chases the cat around the house.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat being chased by mechanical bulldog

Finally another mouse manages to shave the fur off the cat. The cat then makes a hasty retreat.

The Fifth-Column Mouse - black and white cat shocked at having been shaved

Final Mewsings: Cats can be allegorical.


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