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The Night of the Cat (1973)

 -  Thriller  -  1973 (USA)
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Credited cast:
Jeanine Aber
Betsy Aimes
Kathy Allen
Garland Atkins
Joyce Bolynn
Thomas Briggs
Neil Castles Sr.
Bob Chesson
Nick Dennis
Virginia Driggers
George Ellwanger
Bill Haake
Lee Lavender
Bill Looka
Beverly Love


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Release Date:

1973 (USA)  »

Box Office


$100,000 (estimated)

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Shoddy regional action cinema at its best/worst
21 January 2013 | by (Williamsburg, VA) – See all my reviews

Blonde Beth gets the horrible news that her sister has been murdered by some mob types running around in Charlotte, North Carolina. She teams up with a reporter named Tom, who tells her all about head honcho Mr. Demmons' routine of getting girls hooked on drugs and then using them as prostitutes. Oh, Mr. Demmons also has a phobia of cats. So Beth starts taking karate lessons, dyes her hair black (a wig) and decides to bring down Demmons on her own. I'm usually a big fan of regional action flicks, but this one is a pretty trying experience. Director Jim Cinque has a unique style in that he opts to tell the audience nothing 90% of the time and let you fill in the blanks. Seriously, Beth just shows up in one scene with her new look and I had no idea who she was. I actually watched this again in fast forward just to make sure I got everything straight. The "he's afraid of cats" bit is rather funny, but it is never used in Demmons' downfall. In fact, there is one scene where he is terrified of a cat and then it is forgotten. Now I get that Beth is supposed to be cat-like in her all black get up (no thanks to Cinque), but even that isn't capitalized upon (they couldn't add a "Who are you?" "I'm the Cat" scene?). The director's shoddy staging is perfectly matched by his awful filming. The fight scenes in this have to be seen to be believed and static shots will have edits in them moving characters heads around. The film's sole highlight is probably a car chase where it totally looks like the other drivers on the road had no idea a film was being made and thought they were seeing a real police chase. I wouldn't put it past Cinque for opting not to let everyone know.

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