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Il Gatto Nero

The Black Cat

Italy 1981
produced by
Giulio Sbarigia for Italian International Film, Selenia Cinematografica
directed by Lucio Fulci
starring David Warbeck, Patrick Magee, Mimsy Farmer, Dagmar Lassander, Al Cliver, Bruno Corazzari, Daniela Doria
story by Biagio Proietti, screenplay by Biagio Proietti, Lucio Fulci, loosely based on the short story by Edgar Allan Poe, music by Pino Donaggio, special effects by Paolo Ricci, cinematography by Sergio Salvati

Edgar Allan Poe's Black Cat

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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As various murders happen in a small Englich village & the only connection between them might be the presence of a black cat at the scene of the crime, local cop (al Cliver) calls in Scotland Yard for help. Once Yard inspector Gorley (David Warbeck) arrives in town, he has to face a series of bizarre characters - including American photographer Jill (Mimsy Farmer) & eccentric medium professor Miles (Patrick Magee), the actual owner of the cat - while the cat keeps up the killing. However, Jill & professor Miles soon come to the conclusion that the cat has to be behind it all, but deciding this is too fantastic a tale to tell the police, Miles takes the matter of killing the animal into his own hand, hanging the cat on a tree by her neck. The cat however - inexplicably - cheats death, attacks inspector Gorley & manages to have him run over by a car. Jill meanwhile comes to her own conclusions & finds out that professor Miles is actually the mastermind behind all the killings, him - because of being a medium - being able to mind-control the cat - this by the way makes little sense considering the movie's story thus far. She confronts the professor with this, which he admits but claims that not he is controlling the cat but the cat is controlling him  - which also makes little sense. Then he walls Jill up. Meanwhile inspector Gorley, who was miraculously only slightly injured in his accident, has put together the pieces of the puzzle as well, confronts the professor & has his house searched - of course nothing is found ... until Gorley hears the meow of the cat from behind a wall. Obviously, when having walled up Jill, the professor accidently walled up the cat with her ...


Though this movie does have some gruesome murders & does try to establish a creepy atmosphere, all this efforts are seriously hampered by a very muddled & stupid (even for an Italian horror-quickie) screenplay, that not only does make little sense but also tries to sell a cat as a killer to the audience that is just too darn cute to induce anything remotely associated with fear. However, nobody in the filmcrew seemed to notice that discrepancy, thus no attempt is made to either make the animal in the least frightening or turn the movie as such into an ironic and/or macabre chiller.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD