5.8/10
851
26 user 20 critic

The Cat and the Canary (1978)

PG | | Comedy, Mystery, Horror | 1979 (UK)
A group of potential heirs gather in a forbidding old house to learn which of them will inherit a fortune. Later, they learn that a flesh-rending maniac is loose.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (play)
Reviews
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

Two women--one a wealthy society débutante, the other an elegant call girl--with a remarkable resemblance to one another decide to trade professions and social positions temporarily and see what results from it.

Director: Radley Metzger
Stars: Carol Levy, Victor Bevine, Shannah Hall
Comedy | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

When an eccentric family meets in their uncle's remote, decaying mansion on the tenth anniversary of his death for the reading of his will, murder and madness follow.

Director: Elliott Nugent
Stars: Bob Hope, Paulette Goddard, John Beal
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Relatives of an eccentric millionaire gather in his spooky mansion on the 20th anniversary of his death for the reading of his will.

Director: Paul Leni
Stars: Laura La Plante, Creighton Hale, Forrest Stanley
Mother (1973)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Woman rises from being an out-of-work actress to the wife of a powerful South American dictator.

Director: Radley Metzger
Stars: Siegfried Rauch, Christiane Krüger, Ivan Desny
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A jaded, wealthy couple watch a blue movie in their castle home along with her adult son. The son is testy, so they go into town and watch a circus-like thrill ride. The daredevil woman in ... See full summary »

Director: Radley Metzger
Stars: Silvana Venturelli, Frank Wolff, Erika Remberg
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A six-year-old boy witnesses mobsters beat his father to death. Twenty years later, the now-grown boy begins to track down and eliminate the men who did it, determined to wipe out the ... See full summary »

Director: Antonio Isasi-Isasmendi
Stars: Karl Malden, Olivia Hussey, Christopher Mitchum
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  
Director: Chalong Pakdeevijit
Stars: Olivia Hussey, Christopher Mitchum, Pawana Chanajit
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

Helen has been incapable of speech since seeing her husband die - will she become the target of a deranged serial killer targeting disabled people?

Director: Peter Collinson
Stars: Jacqueline Bisset, Christopher Plummer, John Phillip Law
Certificate: GP Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A married man with two small children has an affair with a young teenage girl

Director: Gerry O'Hara
Stars: Tom Bell, Judy Carne, Edward Higgins
Dead Man's Folly (TV Movie 1986)
Crime | Mystery | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

During a murder hunt game at a country house, to which Hercule Poirot is invited as an "expert", a real murder occurs.

Director: Clive Donner
Stars: Peter Ustinov, Jean Stapleton, Constance Cummings
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

A couple about to be married are both having affairs, with women. This campy sex-romp takes place in some European city where everyone appears to be sex crazed and speaks with a different ... See full summary »

Director: Radley Metzger
Stars: Anne Arthur, Karin Field, Sabrina Koch
Drama | Sci-Fi | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The story of a century: a decades-long second World War leaves plague and anarchy, then a rational state rebuilds civilization and attempts space travel.

Director: William Cameron Menzies
Stars: Raymond Massey, Edward Chapman, Ralph Richardson
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Allison Crosby
...
Beatrix Lehmann ...
...
...
...
...
Cyrus West (as Wilfrid Hyde White)
Edit

Storyline

When an elderly man dies, some of his relatives gather to hear the reading of the will. When it is read by his attorney, the old man lets it be known how much he despised and loathed his worthless kin. As a result, his will is structured in such a way as to set up a dogfight between his potential heirs as to who will collect his fortune. Written by Alfred Jingle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

For God's sake, stay in your rooms and lock the doors!

Genres:

Comedy | Mystery | Horror

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1979 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

El gato y el canario  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The play on which this film is based opened in New York at the National Theatre on 7th February 1922 where it played for 148 performances until May 1922. See more »

Goofs

After Hendricks is shot fatally three times by Paul, he is still breathing. See more »

Quotes

Paul Jones: Wanna hear my new song? I wrote it while I was unconscious. It's called 'Kiss My Heiress'.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! (2005) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Parasites and Bastards!
11 October 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The Cat and the Canary is directed by Radley Metzger who also adapts the screenplay from the play written by John Willard. It stars Honor Blackman, Michael Callan, Edward Fox, Wendy Hiller, Olivia Hussey, Wilfred Hyde-White, Carol Lynley, Beatrix Lehmann, Daniel Massey and Peter McEnery. Music is by Steven Cagan and cinematography by Alex Thomson.

Ah the dark house murder mystery, sadly seeming now like a relic of our cinematic pasts. There are many to choose from for those of us who choose to go back in time and cosy up by a warm fire, with drink in hand, to involve ourselves in the standard plot formula of various folk getting bumped off by a scheming murderer during a short time period and under one roof. John Willard's The Cat and the Canary is a well mined source for such fun and fearful frolics, as of the time of writing, this 1979 version stands as the last attempt to transfer the play to the screen.

There is nothing unduly bad about Metzger's movie, it's just that it is rarely inspiring either. The cast is well assembled, with one or two creaky performances aside, the mystery element holds strong, and period flavours are tasteful. But the mansion it's set in is too bright and un-threatening, it's overtly talky as a good hour is used to set up characters and plot dynamics, while there's a distinct lack of acidity in the script. Still, it's never less than fun, and for the innovative reading of the will segment alone this version is worth seeking out by those who decry the demise of the old dark house set mystery thriller. 6/10


2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?