31 Days of Horror: Day 11- The Black Cat (1981)

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Posted October 11, 2017 by Thomas James Juretus in Movies

Day 11 brings us a felonious feline in Italian director Lucio Fulci’s 1981 thriller, The Black Cat. Fulci (The Beyond, The House by the Cemetery) based the film loosely on a story by Edgar Allan Poe. The movie follows a psychic (Patrick Magee) who has found a way to tape record the voices of the dead. Feeling shunned by the residents of the village, he begins to extract vengeance on them through his cat. A photographer (Mimsy Farmer) begins to take notice of the cat scratches on the victims’ bodies, and begins to try to piece together the connection between the murder victims and the psychic. A detective from Scotland Yard (David Warbeck) is also on the case. The violence mounts, and it becomes a question of who’s controlling who- Is the psychic controlling the cat? Or is kitty in charge?

Overall, the plot is a bit silly, yet does work through both the use of clever cinematography (showing us scenes through the cat’s eyes), a decent cast (though Farmer is a bit flat, but everyone else is fine), and some nice little gore effects. There’s a nice mysterious atmosphere maintained throughout, and there is a fair amount of suspense generated as we begin to wonder who’s really in charge. The ending has a nice little twist, even though many may see it coming, that does wrap up the movie in a satisfying manner. Now showing on Amazon Prime, in Italian with English subtitles (a note about the subtitles: they’re small, and don’t stay n the screen long, so unless you’re fluent in Italian, you may miss some words if you’re not a quick reader). It makes for a nice little supernatural mystery, and who can resist a movie about a black cat in October? 7/10 stars


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Thomas James Juretus