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MBC Interactive Archive Retrospective: Highlights of World Cinema "Val Lewton Horror" CAT PEOPLE by Jacques Tourneur

  • 25 Oct 2018
  • 7:00 PM - 8:35 PM
  • Miami Beach Cinematheque at Historic City Hall, 1130 Washington Ave, South Beach
  • 60

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THU, OCT 25, 7p:

MBC Interactive Archive Retrospective:

Highlights of World Cinema

Miami Premiere of the digital restoration!

1940s

Val Lewton Horror

CAT PEOPLE

Directed by JACQUES TOURNEUR/Produced by VAL LEWTON/1942/73mins.

With Simone Simon, Kent Smith, Tom Conway


Publicity still for CAT PEOPLE, 1942, autographed by Simone Simon. #MBCarchive

The first of the horror films producer Val Lewton made for RKO Pictures redefined the genre by leaving its most frightening terrors to its audience’s imagination. Simone Simon stars as a Serbian émigré in Manhattan who believes that, because of an ancient curse, any physical intimacy with the man she loves (Kent Smith) will turn her into a feline predator. Lewton, a consummate producer-auteur who oversaw every aspect of his projects, found an ideal director in Jacques Tourneur, a chiaroscuro stylist adept at keeping viewers off-kilter with startling compositions and psychological innuendo. Together, they eschewed the canned effects of earlier monster movies in favor of shocking with subtle shadows and creative audio cues. One of the studio’s most successful movies of the 1940s, Cat People raised the creature feature to new heights of sophistication and mystery.

“AS IMPORTANT AS CITIZEN KANE IN THE MATURATION OF AMERICAN CINEMA”-Martin Scorsese

“More a film about unreasoning fear than the supernatural, this work demonstrates what a filmmaker can accomplish when he substitutes taste and intelligence for special effects.”-Don Druker, Chicago Reader


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