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Eye of the Cat (1969) - Blu-ray Review

4 beersHoly Frying Felines!  How are YOU going to explain the C-A-T in the rotisserie?  It is, of course, one of my favorite questions in this cat-centered cult classic that Scream Factory puts back into circulation this week.  The bizarre film, with its lurking cats and mysterious music, does more to stroke the fires of Ailurophobia than any other film I know of.  It also features cat fights among 60s swinging babes and lurid sex against some very green plant life.  MEOW!

Starring three-time Oscar-nominee Eleanor Parker (who famously portrayed “the baroness” in The Sound of Music) as the rich relative at the center of this tale of gorgeous greed, Eye of the Cat is a Hitchcockian-like tale concerning crime-thwarting cats and how not to rob the sick.  The stylized film is very much a product of its era, complete with schmaltzy love montages and an extended party scene that threatens to sink it. 

However; the film begins in a very rousing way with an exceptional use of the split-screen effect, establishing a very tense situation that emerges between a feline and a wheelchair bound mistress.  This multi-image opening is engaging, mysterious, and sets up the narrative exceptionally well.  This opening sequence is worthy of the price alone.  It is well-crafted and ends with a horrible spill in a salon.

And, quite honestly, Eye of the Cat only gets better from there.  It is shocking just how effective this crazy film still is.  And don’t even get me started on the creepy oxygen tent that is in play throughout the story.  Eye of the Cat, with its many, many feline friends that are somehow hip to the grand plan to rob their owner, is both sexy and damn funny.  It’s no wonder, considering the talent involved, exactly why this tale lands on all fours.  Everyone has brought their A-game. 

Psycho’s Joseph Stefano wrote this crime caper thriller (by way of a supernatural tale of horror) and, as we have characters being introduced by highlighting their cat-like ways, the whole feline angle is definitely dominant throughout.  Not too mention the army of cats protecting the fortune that two people – Michael Sarrazin as Wylie and Gayle Hunnicutt as Kassia Lancaster – have their eyes on.  The old lady is, after all, nearly dead inside her oxygen tank.   

What eventually emerges from this psychological tale of suspense – set against the hilly vistas of gorgeous San Francisco as composer Lalo Schifrin’s moody strings and piano plunking reign supreme – is a plot to rob a very wealthy lady of her money by some greedy people with major psychological hiccups of their own.  One doesn’t like alleys and has a fear of cats.  The other hates talking with men but is pretty damn effective at manipulating them and bending them to her will. 

Both not prepared for the cats that await them.  You won’t be either. 

With luscious locks of hair courtesy of the females in the cast and long, long eyelashes, this film is smoldering tale about sex and thieves.  It goes in all sorts of directions and, rather unusually, is highlighted by a wheelchair scene in which a woman is sent rocketing backwards on a sidewalk toward a busy San Francisco street.  The scene is incredibly executed and completely sells the horror as one woman faces down one of her own fears.  Directed by David Lowell Rich (Satan’s School for Girls), Eye of the Cat scores major points for its chemistry between Sarrazin and Hunnicutt. 

And those cats!  Ray Berwick, who worked as the bird trainer in The Birds, trained the killer cats, for those who wish to explore more of the Hitchcock connection.  Hair-raising and full of claws, Eye of the Cat leaves more than just a scratch.

Are you a man or a mouse?  Eye of the Cat has your answer.


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Eye of the Cat (1969) - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
102 mins
: David Lowell Rich
Joseph Stefano
Michael Sarrazin, Gayle Hunnicutt, Eleanor Parker
: Horror
Terror that tears the screams right out of your throat!
Memorable Movie Quote: "You mean you're going to leave all your money to those cats?"
Theatrical Distributor:
Universal Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
June 18, 1969
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
January 16, 2018
Synopsis: Wylie (Michael Sarrazin, The Reincarnation of Peter Proud) and Kassia (Gayle Hunnicutt, The Legend of Hell House) are looking for a way to get their hands on the hefty inheritance of Wylie's cat-loving, wealthy Aunt Danny (Eleanor Parker, The Sound of Music). But there is one little problem: Wylie suffers from a severe case of ailurophobia – the fear of cats. In order for their plot to succeed, the pair must first eliminate Aunt Danny's legions of feline companions ... which ends up being much more difficult than expected.


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Eye of the Cat (1969) - Blu-ray Review


Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Shout Factory
Available on Blu-ray
- January 16, 2018
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
: English SDH
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Retaining the grain of its film quality, Scream Factory presents this horror film on blu-ray with a new 1080P transfer in 1.85:1. There’s no real technical limitation spotted here as both interiors and exteriors look good in the new transfer.  There is a solid contrast and the colors appear brighter than on the poor quality DVD releases. Skin tones are solid and the details in some of the period clothing with high levels of saturation.  While there is ZERO depth to many of the shots and dirt and some scratches still pop up, the film has never looked better. The DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 is perfectly suited for home viewing.



  • None

Special Features:

Outside of the new HD film transfer scanned from the original film elements, fans of this movie get radio spots, theatrical trailers and a still gallery.  The heavily edited television version of the movie is also included.  

  • Television Version Of The Film (Standard Definition)
  • Original Radio Spot
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Still Gallery


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Eye of the Cat (1969) - Blu-ray Review