Cat Ballou (1965) - Rotten Tomatoes

Cat Ballou (1965)

Cat Ballou (1965)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

This western spoof tells the story of a tough schoolmarm who becomes a gunslinger to avenge the death of her father. Knowing the killer to be a formidable foe, she hires his twin brother, a drunken lout barely able to stand up, let alone hold a gun.

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Jane Fonda
as Catherine 'Cat' Ballou
Lee Marvin
as Tim Strawn
Michael Callan
as Clay Boone
Dwayne Hickman
as Jed Beaumont
Tom Nardini
as Jackson Two-Bears
John Marley
as Frankie Ballou
Reginald Denny
as Sir Harry Percival
Jay C. Flippen
as Sheriff Cardigan
Arthur Hunnicutt
as Butch Cassidy
Stubby Kaye
as Shouter
Bruce Cabot
as Sheriff Maledon
Burt Mustin
as Accuser
Paul Gilbert
as Train messenger
Everett L. Rohrer
as Train Engineer
Harry Harvey
as Train Conductor
Hallene Hill
as Honey Girl
Gail Bonney
as Mabel Bentley
Joe Hamilton
as Frenchie
Dorothy Claire
as Singing Tart
Chuck Roberson
as Armed Guard
Ted White
as Gunslinger
Ivan L. Middleton
as Train Fireman
Carol Veazie
as Mrs. Parker
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News & Interviews for Cat Ballou

Critic Reviews for Cat Ballou

All Critics (21)

The picture isn't as consistently funny as its reputation would suggest, but Marvin is terrific.

May 21, 2016 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
Creative Loafing

Super Jane Fonda in Wild West. Ride 'em cowgirls!

December 22, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
Common Sense Media

A drunk Lee Marvin on a horse to match makes this comedy western classic.

March 23, 2008 | Rating: 4/5

Though designed as a star vehicle for Jane Fonda, this first "official" spoof of the Western genre, catapulted Lee Marvin to major stardom, offering him two divergent roles (one played with a silver nose) for which he was rewarded with the 1965 Oscar.

June 3, 2007 | Rating: B | Full Review…

Lee Marvin clearly steals the film in his double role as the good guy/bad guy hired gunman.

February 1, 2006 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Clever spoof with great roles for Fonda and Marvin

August 5, 2005 | Rating: 4/5
Kalamazoo Gazette

Audience Reviews for Cat Ballou

A schoolteacher hires a gang of misfits to revenge her slain father. Maybe I just don't like Westerns ... or comedies. I found all of the jokes flat and all the gags ludicrous. I chuckled once: "He did it! He missed the barn!" Lee Marvin's performance is good. He plays his typical hard-ass role, and he satirizes himself playing the drunken good guy. The film doesn't say much. There isn't a lot in the way of femme power, but Jane Fonda isn't incredibly compelling. Tom Nardini's token Native character isn't as offensive as most Western portrayals of Native characters, but the line "It wasn't me that did that to Custer" implies that Natives are generally evil, but this one isn't (never mind that Custer had it coming to him, that blond-haired, blue-eyed criminal fuck). Overall, fans of Westerns might like this comedy, but I'm everything but a fan of Westerns.

Jim Hunter
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer


Somewhere inside of Cat Ballou is a great movie trying to get out. With a rarely more beautiful Jane Fonda (see the scene towards the end in the red dress) and a great comedic dual role from Lee Marvin this movie begs to be noticed. But all the other shit driving me away was the problem. Let's start with the whole Nat King Cole and Stubby Kaye thing -- STOP! If the songs are actually serving some purpose to move the story forward, fine but if they're just pissing people (namely me) off cut the crap. Then the chemistry between Fonda and Michael Callan was non-existent along with most of the jokes. And were there really natives who spoke Yiddish? Were there really?

Michael Gildea
Michael Gildea

Super Reviewer

I've seen better women westerns than this, so this movie felt very silly and average. It gets a laugh here and there, but overall it's just okay.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

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