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The Black Cat
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Release Date:
2 May 1941 (USA) See more »
Even Ladd Is Scared!
Elderly Henrietta Winslow lives in an isolated mansion with her housekeeper and beloved cats. As her health fails, her greedy relatives gather in anticipation of her death. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
There's something rotten in the house of Winslow! See more (28 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Basil Rathbone ... Montague Hartley

Hugh Herbert ... Mr. Penny

Broderick Crawford ... Hubert A. Gilmore 'Gil' Smith

Bela Lugosi ... Eduardo Vigos

Anne Gwynne ... Elaine Winslow

Gladys Cooper ... Myrna Hartley

Gale Sondergaard ... Abigail Doone
Cecilia Loftus ... Henrietta Winslow
Claire Dodd ... Margaret Gordon
John Eldredge ... Stanley Borden

Alan Ladd ... Richard Hartley
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Erville Alderson ... Doctor Williams (uncredited)
Harry C. Bradley ... Coroner (uncredited)
Jack Cheatham ... 1st Moving Man (uncredited)
Edgar Sherrod ... Minister (uncredited)

Directed by
Albert S. Rogell 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Robert Lees 
Robert Neville 
Edgar Allan Poe  story
Frederic I. Rinaldo 
Eric Taylor 

Produced by
Burt Kelly .... producer
Original Music by
Hans J. Salter (uncredited)
Frank Skinner (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Stanley Cortez 
Film Editing by
Ted J. Kent 
Art Direction by
Jack Otterson 
Set Decoration by
Russell A. Gausman 
Costume Design by
Vera West 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Howard Christie .... assistant director
Art Department
Ralph M. DeLacy .... associate art director
Sound Department
Bernard B. Brown .... sound supervisor
Hal Bumbaugh .... sound technician
William Schwartz .... sound technician (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
John P. Fulton .... special photographic effects
Music Department
Hans J. Salter .... musical director (as H.J. Salter)
Ralph Freed .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Charles Henderson .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Charles Previn .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Other crew
Jaik Rosenstein .... unit publicity writer (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
70 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Canada:PG (Ontario) | Sweden:15 | UK:PG | USA:Approved (certificate #7271)

Did You Know?

Bela Lugosi had earlier starred in The Black Cat (1934) alongside Boris Karloff which like this was an adaptation, albeit a darker and more violent one, of the Edgar Allan Poe story.See more »
Mr. Penny:[referring to Abigail] What a puss! Like a lemon rinse!See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Adjust Your Tracking (2013)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
8 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
There's something rotten in the house of Winslow!, 22 May 2012
Author: Spikeopath from United Kingdom

The Black Cat is directed by Albert S. Rogell and written by Robert Lees and Robert Neville. It stars Basil Rathbone, Hugh Herbert, Broderick Crawford, Bela Lugosi and Gale Sondergaard. Music is by Hans J. Salter and cinematography by Stanley Cortez.

Henrietta Winslow, a cat-loving old dear, is coming to the end of her days. Tonight her parasitic family have gathered at the Winslow mansion to rub their hands with glee as Henrietta's will is read out. But.......

.....Henrietta knew that whom the black cat follows – dies!

"That house is doubly blest. Which to the feline friends gives rest"

It's hardly a classic from the old dark house murder mystery treadmill, but The Black Cat is enormous fun and gets the sub-genre staples spot on. It's a big old fashioned mansion that is host to the creepy shenanigans, complete with secret passageways, revolving booths, suits of armour and roaring fires. There's even a creepy cat crematorium annex in the grounds as well! Naturally it's a stormy night, and naturally the collection of weasels and deviants start getting bumped off one by one. Cue much shrieking, blaming, dodging and the odd red herring. The mystery element is strong, with a good reveal preceding a fiery finale, and there's some high energy antics thrown in for good measure; the latter concerns Crawford's character who jumps through armour, leaps off a balcony and constantly falls down on the floor. Cast are working on a par with the material, with the highlights being Crawford, Sondergaard (who is deliciously spooky) and Herbert (who is the Lou Costello type comedy relief).

More comedy than creeper, but a comfortable recommendation for fans of similar movies. 6.5/10

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Gale Sondergaard in a tight dress chongajuly
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Minor little flick with a great cast!! TEDPLUS
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