The Curse of the Cat People (1945)
Critics Consensus: Foregoing the horror thrills of its predecessor in favor of childhood fantasy, Curse of the Cat People is a touching and psychologically complex family film couched in a ghost story.
No Top Critics Tomatometer score yet...
Officially a sequel to Val Lewton's psychological-horror classic Cat People (1942), Curse of the Cat People is in fact an engrossing and oftimes charming fantasy, told from a child's point of view. Six-year-old Ann Carter plays Amy Reed, the lonely daughter of eternally preoccupied Oliver Reed (Kent Smith). Amy's vivid imagination and inability to get along with her schoolmates leads Oliver to worry that the girl will start exhibiting the psychopathic tendencies of his long-deceased first wife Irena (Simone Simon), the obsessive "Cat Woman" in the earlier film. Oliver's second wife Alice (Jane Randolph) and Amy's sympathetic schoolteacher (Eve March) try to help, but Amy prefers the company of elderly Julia Farren (Julia Dean), a harmlessly crazy ex-actress who lives in a forbidding mansion with her neurotic daughter Barbara (Elizabeth Russell). Insanely jealous of Amy, Barbara ultimately tries to do the girl harm, but she is thwarted in this effort by the ghost of Irena, Amy's self-appointed guardian angel. Advertised as a horror picture, Curse of the Cat People has only one genuine "shock" scene; otherwise, the most frightening moment in the film is Julia Farren's spirited rendition of "The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere." Saddled with a lurid title, producer Lewton and screenwriter DeWitt Bodeen chose to offer a fascinating glimpse into the wonderfully boundless realm of a child's imagination, and in this respect the film is an unqualified success. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi … More
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Critic Reviews for The Curse of the Cat People
Made as sequel to the profitable Cat People, this is highly disappointing because it fails to measure up as a horrific opus.
Far from being a horror film, it's a touching, perceptive and lyrical film about childhood, psychologically astute and occasionally disturbing as it focuses entirely on the child's-eye view of a sad, cruel world.
It makes a rare departure from the ordinary run of horror films and emerges as an oddly touching study of the working of a sensitive child's mind.
A film that takes the business of childhood completely seriously and aligns itself to a child's perspective with absolute conviction.
Mysteries and meanings to curl around each other like creeping vines.
One of those movies that coheres more interestingly because of its own odd heterogeneities, largely because the brio and friskiness of the filmmaking remain fairly constant over the short 70 minutes, even as the idioms keep moving around.
A remarkably elusive picture, a producer-auteur's personal summarization, a gold mine for later fabulists
This picture remains one of the most ethereal looks at childhood the cinema has produced.
One of the weakest movies from the Val Lawton unit. It's difficult to tell whether it's a horror film, a ghost story of just the imaginings of a sad, lonely, little girl.
Truly creepy, atomospheric classic directed by Robert Wise.
This rather silly follow-up to Cat People isn't so much unwatchable as it is merely unnecessary.
RKO expected to get another supernatural chiller, with people turning into panthers and killing folks in the streets. Boy, were they disappointed.
Marvellously eloquent, and touchingly accurate in accessing the secret landscape of a child's mind.
Some kind of gentle, bizarre masterpiece.
A triumph of atmosphere over story.
Audience Reviews for The Curse of the Cat People
A bad sequel, it doesn't have anything to do with the first one really, and it's silly. I don't recommend this movie.More
The words "horrible sequel to a great movie" spring to mind when trying to describe Curse of the Cat People. Taking place several years after the original, Kent Smith and Jane Randolph have settled down in the suburbs, had a weird (mostly because Smith turned into a total dick) kid and generally gave up on life. The action (a word used very loosely) mostly follows said weird kid Amy who creates an imaginary friend in Simone Simon from the first Cat People and hangs out at the house of a nutty has-been actress in some kind of odd emotional struggle with her creepy yet foxy daughter. Robert Wise's (co-) directorial outing shows some real promise of what was to come from one of the world's most underrated directors with some really beautiful imagery in the back yard scenes. If you like child psychology mixed in with your suspense you're in for a real treat but otherwise its a completely pointless sequel. The good news is that The Curse of the Cat People will only eat a little over an hour of your time should you feel the overwhelming need to see it, but no matter what anyone says they should've let it go with the first.More
You can ignore the title which is very misleading. It is the sequel to Cat People but it?s a totally different kind of film. This time round its directed by Robert Wise but still produced by Lewton. It?s a wonderful fantasy film that I recommend viewing around Christmas time. It will make you feel all warm inside and will make a change from watching The Great Escape & It?s a wonderful life :o)More
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