6.3/10
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34 user 16 critic

The Black Cat (1941)

Approved | | Comedy, Horror, Mystery | 2 May 1941 (USA)
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.

Director:

Albert S. Rogell
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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
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Storyline

Greedy heirs gather to wait for the death of Henrietta Winslow. Murder, thunder claps, howling cats, gun shots, screams in the night, hidden passages -- all the proper ingredients. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Even Ladd Is Scared!

Genres:

Comedy | Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 May 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El gato negro See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$176,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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 »

Quotes

Hubert Smith: Drink your milk, it's good for you.
Henrietta Winslow: It's only good for hair and teeth, mine are false.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rewind This! (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Her hats are full of bats for spending all her dough on cats."
13 February 2014 | by utgard14See all my reviews

Old lady gathers her greedy relatives in her gloomy isolated mansion for a reading of her will. Not long after, she winds up dead. Welcome to an old dark house thriller, friends. Yes, it's fairly repetitive of many other such thrillers or comedies but it's pretty entertaining at times. It has an excellent cast, most of which unfortunately have little to do. Broderick Crawford stars in an early role. He's equal parts leading man and buffoon. The kind of part Wayne Morris would have been playing over at WB. Bela Lugosi has a small, thankless part. He spends most of the movie ominously lurking in the shadows and peering in windows. Hugh Herbert provides the movie's comic relief. For the uninitiated that means he fidgets and talks to himself, punctuating every other sentence with "woo hoo." It's not very funny but I found it harmless enough. Maybe I'm just used to Herbert by now. Others may find him irritating so be warned. The rest of the cast includes Basil Rathbone, Gale Sondergaard, Anne Gwynne, Gladys Cooper, and Alan Ladd before he made it big. I agree with another reviewer that this probably would have worked better as an Abbott & Costello movie. Despite the relatively short runtime, it begins to feel overlong as it nears the hour mark. It's enjoyable enough but flawed. Still, anything Universal was putting out in the horror/thriller field in the 1940s was worth watching.


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