Saturday, January 24, 2009

1/21/09: Because of the Cats (1973)

Sociopathic rich kids form a "secret society" called the Ravens, then raid the houses of married couples, destroy all their belongings, and rape the wives. A detective, Inspector van der Valk (Bryan Marshall), quickly narrows down the suspect pool and spends the movie trying to prove their guilt. Based on a 1963 series novel by British crime writer Nicolas Freeling, this sounded like an absorbing and suspenseful idea for a thriller—or, at least, the source for a few cheap thrills. But despite graphic violence and liberal amounts of female nudity, Cats lures you into a catnap. Dutch director Fons Rademakers directly sloppily, barely managing to scrape together a few passable scenes. It's a horrendously made thriller made on a shoestring budget—the results are very dull and slow moving, and the musical score is inappropriately bombastic and intrusive. Worst of all, Marshall has absolutely zero appeal (maybe he needed some catnip). Best appreciated as an artifact from the early 1970s trash heap. Sylvia Kristel, who appears in a small role, filmed this only a year before her star turn as Emmanuelle. Rating: 1/5.

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