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The Catman of Paris

USA 1946
produced by
Republic
directed by Lesley Selander
starring Carl Esmond, Lénore Aubert, Adele Mara, Douglass Dumbrille, Gerald Mohr, Fritz Feld, Francis Pierlot, Georges Renavent, Francis McDonald, Maurice Cass, Alphonse Martell, Paul Marion, John Dehner, Anthony Caruso, Carl Neubert, Elaine Lange, Tanis Chandler, George Davis, Robert J.Wilke, Armand Roland, Hector Sarno, Gino Corrado
written by Sherman L.Lowe, music by R.Dale Butts, special effects by Howard Lydecker, Theodore Lydecker

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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19th century France: Charles Regnier (Carl Esmond) is a famed novelist who has just returned to Paris and written a bestseller - which is on the verge of being banned because it contains many a detail of a secret trial Charles isn't even supposed to know about. Then one evening, Deveraux (Francis McDonald), a man closely connected with the trial and one of Charles' critics is killed by what is described as a catman, and oddly enough, Charles has no recollections about that evening.

Charles is engaged to Marguerite Duval (Adele Mara), but as she only loves him for his status and everything, he has been getting bored by her lately and fallen in love with young Marie (Lénore Aubert), the very natural daughter of his publisher (Francis Pierlot) - thing is, Marguerite doesn't want to let Charles go ... until she is eventually also killed by the Catman, and again, Charles has no recollections about the time the murder took place ... but the police has found quite some evidence leading to him, and before he knows it, Charles, accompanied by Marie and his best friend and agent Henri (Douglass Dumbrille), finds himself on the run.

Soon, Henri makes arrangements for Charles to escape to Spain while he warns Marie that Charles really is the Catman and even gives her a gun to defend herself ... and wouldn't you know it, later that night Marie is really attacked by the Catman, and her gun has no effect at all. Only in the nick of time is the Catman shot by police inspector Severen (Gerald Mohr), who had tracked the Catman down to here and who soon finds out Marie's gun was loaded with blanks.

In the end, the Catman turns out to be not Charles after all but Henri, who had some mystic powers that enabled him to telepathically transmit facts about the secret trial to Charles, to make Charles lose his memory every time he, Henri, turned into the Catman and killed somebody, and to turn into the Catman into the first place.

And of course in the end Charles gets the girl.

 

Typical Republic B horror flick: The story isn't completely thought-through, the make up effects are at best so-so, and the Paris-sets are not neccessarily all that convincing - and still the film is quite entertaining, and pepped up by some Western elements, including a barroom brawl and a carriage chase (including blazing guns and a carriage crash). No classic, surely, but in all quite entertaining.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

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Tales to Chill
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
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tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
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Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

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Out now from
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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
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

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

out now on DVD