The Curse Of The Cat People (1944) (Blu-ray Review)

The Curse Of The Cat People (1944) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Robert Wise
Starring: Simone Simon, Kent Smith, Jane Randolph
Rated: UR/1:33/1080p/Region A/Number of Discs 1
Available from Scream Factory

Filled with “wonderful atmosphere [and] fine, moody fantasy” (Leonard Maltin), this continuation of 1942’s Cat People follows Oliver Reed (Kent Smith), now remarried, living in idyllic Tarrytown, New York, and the father of six-year-old Amy. When Amy becomes withdrawn and speaks of consorting with a new “friend,” Oliver worries that she may be under the influence of the spirit of his first wife. Is it just Amy’s imagination that has manifested the enigmatic Irena (Simone Simon), who long believed herself to be descended from a race of Cat People?

The Curse of the Cat People isn’t on the same level as the original Cat People, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad movie. This is a movie that really goes above and beyond to add in a lot of cool horror tricks to make a movie that is both creepy and solid. This is a movie with a lot of mood and an eerie vibe that goes a long way for it. We also have a creepy kid that doesn’t seem to fit it in with anyone and for good reason. When you add all of that together you have a movie that is a worthy sequel to the original classic, even if it misses the mark of being as good as the original. If you like the creepy late night movie feel, it has that. If you are looking for good acting, it also has that as well. The worst sin this one commits is perhaps being a bit unnecessary following the original Cat People.

Coming to us from 1944 and being only about 70 minutes long, this makes for a movie that gets right to the point more or less and doesn’t try to drag it’s feet or play around. As far as a Blu-ray goes, this is a release that matches up nicely with the Criterion release of Cat People. The transfer looks really nice and we have some new stuff in the extras to make picking this one up seem like even more of a good idea. If you like old black and white horror movies that are more atmosphere than anything else, then you’ll probably enjoy this as well. But it’s will stand better at a late night viewing of the old film and then this than it would being tossed in alongside such stuff as Night of the Living Dead and Carnival of Souls. It’s still good, just not THAT good.

Extras

– NEW Audio Commentary With Author/Historian Steve Haberman
– Audio Commentary With Historian Greg Mank, With Audio Interview Excerpts With Actress Simone Simon
– NEW Lewton’s Muse: The Dark Eyes Of Simone Simon – A Video Essay By Filmmaker Constantine Nasr (Shadows In The Dark: The Val Lewton Legacy)
– NEW Audio Interview With Ann Carter, Moderated By Tom Weaver
– Theatrical Trailers
– Still Gallery

Quality of Transfer: 90%