The Cat's Meow

Critics Consensus

The Cat's Meow is a deliciously evoked period piece and whodunit.

75%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 126

51%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 7,903

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Movie Info

From award-winning screenwriter Steven Peros and acclaimed director Peter Bogdanovich comes "The Cat's Meow," an extraordinary look at a fateful excursion of fun and frolic aboard William Randolph Hearst's private yacht in November of 1924 that brought together some of the century's best-known personalities and resulted in a still-unsolved, hushed-up killing.

Cast & Crew

Kirsten Dunst
Marion Davies
Cary Elwes
Thomas Ince
Edward Herrmann
William Randolph Hearst
Eddie Izzard
Charlie Chaplin
Joanna Lumley
Elinor Glyn
Victor Slezak
George Thomas
Jennifer Tilly
Louella Parsons
James Laurenson
Dr. Daniel Carson Goodman
Ronan Vibert
Joseph Willicombe
Michael Paseornek
Executive Producer
Martin Hagemann
Line Producer
Bruno Delbonnel
Cinematographer
Jean-Vincent Puzos
Production Designer
Christian Eisele
Art Direction
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Critic Reviews for The Cat's Meow

All Critics (126) | Top Critics (43) | Fresh (94) | Rotten (32)

Audience Reviews for The Cat's Meow

  • Nov 08, 2013
    Went for it just because it's based on true events. Turns out it's based on rumors. No problem. Was surprised to learn that Chaplin was so scandalous. The story was not so so-so, but the performances and casting were. Historically, if the given version is correct, it's quite significant in depicting the height of corruption. As to me, I really don't know. If he's shot, why didn't anyone come forward even after Hearst's death? If he wasn't, why the characters involved got a promotion soon after it. It surely was given a touch of a cover up. The movie doesn't tend to explain it, it simply presents (modification of) one of the versions of this mysterious event. Could have been way better.
    familiar s Super Reviewer
  • Jun 04, 2013
    Spirited speculation over one of Hollywood's most infamous mysterious deaths, as producer Thomas Ince gets the final cut aboard publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst's yacht populated by era luminaries including Marion Davies and Charlie Chaplin. Director Peter Bogdanovich ranks among the most knowledgeable movie history nerds, and they don't come any nerdier. Kirsten Dunst playfully flaunts her effortless charm as the glamorous Davies, while Eddie Izzard at first seems a strange choice to play Chaplin but grows into the role. The truth will remain hidden, but this offers a plausible simulation in light of the peculiar business deals (payoffs?) that followed. 500 bonus points if you've ever wanted to see Dunst dance the Charleston!
    Doctor S Super Reviewer
  • Jun 04, 2013
    Gawd this is a boring film. Hearst and Chaplin were probably rolling over in their graves at their portrayals in this film. Neither of them were particularly interesting to hang out with. Kirsten Dunst portrays annoying as no one else can.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Mar 17, 2013
    Quirky and entertaining, The Cat's Meow is a captivating period film about a fascinating piece of Hollywood lore. Inspired by true events and based on a play, the story attempts to unravel a notorious Hollywood murder that supposedly occurred aboard the yacht of wealthy media tycoon William Randolph Hearst in 1924. Kirsten Dunst, Edward Herrmann, Eddie Izzard, and Cary Elwes form a solid cast and give good performances. Additionally, the makeup and costumes are especially well-done, and give an authentic look and feel to the film. However, the storytelling is poor and gets a little lost in itself. The Cat's Meow is an intriguing murder mystery, but there are some problems with the execution.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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