The Black Cat

The Black Cat (1934)

Directed by Edgar G. Ulmer

The Black Cat 1934

This was the first film to pair Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi, the two giants of horror cinema, together, and as such it was Universal’s highest grossing film of the year. Yet, it is somehow ironic that The Black Cat is not a traditional monster movie in the mould of either Dracula (1931) or Frankenstein (1931). It fails even to explore the same Gothic landscapes as those two films and it may be because of this, that it succeeds as being one of the most grimly shocking of all the pre-Code movies. Admittedly, its impact has dimmed, but every film is to some extent a time capsule and should be seen, with at least half an eye, on how it was received when originally released.

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