That Darn Cat!
Apr 5, 2017 | by Jessika Loucks
It’s a Feline Frenzy!!
Danger, Mystery, Jealousy, Love and Laughs are all had in Disney’s 1965 Comedy “That Darn Cat!”
Based on the 1963 novel “Undercover Cat” by Gordan and Mildred Gordon, this hilarious adaptation was, and continues to be, well received by critics and avid Disney fans. Making a whopping $28,068,222 at the box office, along with numerous award nominations, this flick brings high expectations.
So is this movie worth your time? Well let’s look at the good and the bad.
The credits begin with a fun song written by the famous Sherman brothers (Mary Poppins) and sung by the smooth voice of Bobby Darin. Following this snappy song the movie goes right into the main theme with DC (Darn Cat) sneaking into places he shouldn’t be in.
As the movie begins we learn that there has been a robbery and a kidnapping. Frank Gorshin (The Riddler in the 1960’s Batman tv show) is hilarious as Iggy the paranoid, cat loving sidekick to Dan (Nerville Brand) the brains of the operation, bringing plenty of giggles.
While the crooks decide what to do next, DC is thrown into a rescue plan where we are transported to the Randall residence where we meet DC’s caretaker Patti (Hayley Mills). It is clear early on that Patti has a special connection to DC and has her own ideas about how he should be treated.
Tom Lowell plays Patti’s wacky, surfer boyfriend Canoe while her snooty older sister Ingrid (Dorothy Provine) and Ingrid’s pushy carpool driver Gregory (Roddy McDowall) bring there own fun to the plot.
With everyone oblivious to DC’s hidden cry for help, the genius feline begins his shenanigans causing viewer laughs and discord between Gregory and the Randall girls.
“Be Careful Gregory, be extremely careful about what you say! I haven’t had my coffee yet, and I’m in no mood for stupid, irresponsible remarks.” – Ingrid Randall
Patti, a natural sleuth, finds the cry for help and thus brings us to the F.B.I. Dean Jones plays the matter-of-fact Zeke Kelso a no nonsense F.B.I. Agent. After some coxing, Zeke decides to stake out DC in hopes that he will lead them to the robbers.
Through many silly antics, including hilarious scenes with a drive-in movie, a swimming pool and a garage door, it becomes very clear why the title of this movie is “That Darn Cat!.”
Let us not forget the laughs that Elsa Lanchester brings as the nosy neighbor, Mrs. MacDougall, and a fun cameo with the legendary Ed Wynn (Mary Poppins, Alice in wonderland etc.).
“ You mean you want me to tail the cat as if he’s a person?” – Zeke Kelso
Will That Darn Cat lead them to the robbers in time? Will love blossom between Patti’s snooty sister Ingrid and the uptight Zeke? And how will Patti and Canoe fare after so many miscommunications?
This is definitely a comedy and I feel the humor in this flick is to be noted with amazing Comedic players. I found myself chuckling often and full on belly laughing at times. The plot moves along well with many fun surprises which I found refreshing as many newer movies are so predictable.
The acting is wonderful to say the least, with so many amazing and fun characters and each actor/actress playing their part to perfection. One other thing worth a mention is the fact that this is Hayley Mills’ last movie with Disney. I found her performance as Patti Randall one of my favorites out of the six movies she was part of during her time at Disney.
There really isn’t too much I would complain about. That being said if I had to choose one thing, it would be that at times the film can feel a little slow moving. There are a few scenes that I feel could have been nixed without being a detriment to the plot.
“Couldn’t we just once see a nice quiet movie where boy meets girl, they have problems which aren’t too weird, they fall in love and live happily ever after?”- Patti Randall
So by now you are probably asking yourself, is it worth it? Is it worth spending your hard earned Friday night immersed in almost two hours of crazy feline shenanigans? As someone who is a huge Disney fan, but is by no means a cat lover, I say with no hesitation – yes! If you love thrills, romance and laughs I recommend you spend the time to watch this hilarious tangled up purrrfect mess of fun – you will be glad you did!