5.6/10
1,070
28 user 24 critic

The Cat and the Canary (1978)

A group of potential heirs gather in a forbidding old house to learn which of them will inherit a fortune. Later, they learn that a flesh-rending maniac is loose.

Director:

Radley Metzger

Writers:

Radley Metzger (screenplay), John Willard (play)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Honor Blackman ... Susan Sillsby
Michael Callan ... Paul Jones
Edward Fox ... Hendricks
Wendy Hiller ... Allison Crosby
Olivia Hussey ... Cicily Young
Beatrix Lehmann ... Mrs. Pleasant
Carol Lynley ... Annabelle West
Daniel Massey ... Dr. Harry Blythe
Peter McEnery ... Charlie Wilder
Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Cyrus West (as Wilfrid Hyde White)
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Storyline

When an elderly man dies, some of his relatives gather to hear the reading of the will. When it is read by his attorney, the old man lets it be known how much he despised and loathed his worthless kin. As a result, his will is structured in such a way as to set up a dogfight between his potential heirs as to who will collect his fortune. Written by Alfred Jingle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

For God's sake, stay in your rooms and lock the doors!

Genres:

Comedy | Mystery | Horror

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

1979 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

El gato y el canario See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Grenadier Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was made and released about fifty-six years after its source stage play of the same name by John Willard had been first performed in 1922. See more »

Goofs

After Hendricks is shot fatally three times by Paul, he is still breathing. See more »

Quotes

Hendricks: Weapons can be as dangerous as maniacs.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits of the film are shown in the form of Cyrus West (Wilfrid Hyde-White) holding up a series of title cards for the crew credits, followed by silent clips of the main characters with the corresponding actors' names but no character names. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Anchor Bay DVD is the director's cut, which runs 106 minutes. See more »

Connections

References The Scarlet Pimpernel (1934) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An enjoyable misfire.
5 July 2004 | by dbborroughsSee all my reviews

This film version of greedy relatives gathering for the reading of a will has been crucified in some corners as a pale shadow of the original, or if not the original the Bob Hope version. While certainly no classic this is a fun retelling of the story that works because the cast is so enjoyable to watch and because the old story works even if its done half way decently.

This was the first version of the story that I ever saw. Endless reruns on HBO years ago have burned portions of this film into my mind, but I didn't mind since the film was just a good time passer.

No, its not perfect. The 1970's retro feel that it has doesn't really work and makes the film feel like it doesn't belong anywhere. There were several films in the 1970's set in the 20's, 30's or 40's that suffered similar fates, particularly if they had any European connections. This is not the place to discuss it, but when you see this film you'll understand what I mean.

And you should see this since its good but far from great. Is this the version if you can only see one go at the story? No, that would probably be the Bob Hope version, but if you want something for a rainy Sunday that won't tax the brain, this is it.

7 out of 10 on the pure enjoyment scale.


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