The Shadow of the Cat

1961

John Gilling
Director
B.H.P. Films
Studio

Feisty feline sets out to avenge the murder of her kindly (and wealthy) master.

Fine period horror piece, aided by an excellent cast and direction. One could wonder why a mere cat could be such a menace, but viewed as a manifestation of guilt, ala Poe, it becomes much more satisfying (even moreso if you're a cat lover). Only detriment is the bombastic score, which tends to undercut the tension a bit. Cute coda.

Note: This film is often described as a Hammer Film, but it isn't one. In the early 1960s, the ACTT (Association of Cinematograph Television and Allied Technicians) agreed to sponsor some of their own films in light of a slump in British productions. BHP Films was one of the companies formed to take advantage of this. In a goodwill gesture, Hammer agreed to supply studio sets and personnel for a nominal fee. So while it was filmed on the familar Bray sets and with much of the usual Hammer production crew, not to mention the flavor of a Hammer film, it technically isn't one.

Another Note: Some of the minor cast are only seen through "cat vision," which was compressed and flattened in scope. I've corrected this, so you can actually see what the actors looked like.

Thanks to Gerald Lovell for helping correct some mistakes I made in identification!

-Dave W.



1st May 1961
Cinema



79 mins
1.66:1



HyperLink
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André Morell
Walter Venable
Barbara Shelley
Beth Venable
William Lucas
Jacob Venable
Freda Jackson
Clara
Conrad Phillips
Michael Latimer
Richard Warner
Edgar Venable
Vanda Godsell
Louise Venable
Alan Wheatley
Inspector Rowles
Andrew Crawford
Andrew
Kynaston Reeves
The Grandfather
Catherine Lacey
Ella Venable
Tabitha
Herself
Henry Kendall
The Doctor
John Dearth
Constable Hamer
Unknown
Constable
Unknown
Constable
Peter Evans
Constable (uncredited)
Jack Armstrong
Workman (uncredited)
Unknown
Workman
Unknown
Coachman
George Doonan
Ambulance Man
Fred Stone
Ambulance Man
Kevin Stoney
The Father
Vera Cook
The Mother
Angela Crow
The Daughter
Howard Knight
The Son
Rodney Burke
Workman
Charles Stanley
Dobbins
Jack Cooper
Stunts

Dave Wright: Screencaps & Notes