Africa Screams (1949)

Africa Screams poster

Huntington Hartford Productions
 Bud Abbott, Lou Costello
Directed by: Charles Barton

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

Synopsis: Buzz Johnson (Bud Abbott) and Stanley Livingston (Lou Costello) get caught up in a scheme to locate diamonds in Africa where they encounter all kinds of kooky adventures.

Cat Burglar (Scene Stealer): The opening scene of the film sees Stanley in a safari suit as he is apparently taming some kind of ferocious beast in what appears to be a jungle setting.  He holds a gun and a whip and tells his opponent (who is off screen at this point) not to move.  He then starts cracking the whip, ordering whatever it is to “Sit up!”  As the camera pulls back we see it is a tiny tabby kitten on a log (who is startled at the sound of the whip cracking).

Africa Screams - Stanley Livingston Lou Costello taming tiny tabby kitten on log

Africa Screams - tiny tabby kitten on log looking up

The kitten mews in defiance.

Africa Screams - tabby kitten mewing at Stanley Livingston Lou Costello

Stanley continues to order the kitten to sit up but the kitten hisses at him and then snarls.

Africa Screams - tabby kitten snarling at Stanley Livingston Lou Costello

Stanley shakes with fright at this confrontation and runs out of the jungle set into the book section of the department store where he works.  The kitten jumps off the log and follows.

Africa Screams - tiny tabby kitten getting off log

The kitten stares up at Stanley and scares him even more.

Africa Screams - tiny tabby kitten looking up from floor

Stanley calls for his friend Buzz, who comes out and picks up the kitten and holds it up to Stanley, which scares him even more.  “Stanley, it’s a harmless little kitten!” Buzz insists.  “Ooh, look at the wild look on his face!” Stanley cries.  The kitten first seen on the log and this kitten have longer fur than the tabby kitten used in the other scenes.

Africa Screams - Stanley Livingston Lou Costello scared and Buzz Johnson Bud Abbott holding tiny tabby kitten

Buzz sets the kitten down and asks Stanley about his irrational fear of animals.  The kitten is still sitting on the floor nearby looking up at Stanley as the scene ends.

Africa Screams - tiny tabby kitten still looking up from floor

Final Mewsings: Kittens don’t like to be ordered around!

Many thanks to our dear friend Fritz for reminding up of this cute comedic kitty!

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