31 Days of Horror: Cat People (1942)

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It is now October and people are delighting in all things horror and macabre. The decorations are flooding the shelves and the movie selections are quite focused on scaring the wits of you. This can leave the meek and jittery little of cinematic enjoyment

Fear not fellow meeklings, I bring you some respite. For I am a meekling.We are those who fear the dark but we are obsessed about what we cannot see. We, who will not venture into the gore or slasher films. Seeing Freddy or Jason is enough to make flee in terror..Fellow meeklings, despair not, there are movie selections that may be of enjoyment.

Of all the classic horror movies, Cat People, remains a favorite. It  is a black and white film from 1942 and centers  around a feline shape shifter. Relax and let the absurd yet eerie movie captivate you.

The movie begins as a mystery surrounding a mysterious (and obviously the shapeshifter) woman, Irena Dubrovna. She is your typical noir woman: aloof, fashionable, beautiful, with a sinister air. She has drawn the attention of Oliver Reed while she is sketching a lion at the zoo. Their acquaintance begins innocently enough until subtle horrors begin to occur. Something is not right with Irene and she does not hesitate to strike.

The black and white atmosphere definitely adds a depth of spookiness and tension from the first moment. What also draws the viewer in is the story itself. Compared to other movies of that time and after, it doesn’t clear fit into any neat category. It can be seen as mystery noir, a tragedy, a classic monster story, or a general pulp story. However classified, it delivers a great movie.

Not to mention, this reviewer is a complete sucker for shape shifter stories, classic movies, and cats.

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