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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Surprising Thriller
I had many difficulties to see this movie from Dario Argento because it was not easy to find it in my country, but when I finally saw it, it really surprised me. Like THE BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE this second film from the Italian Master of Horror is very impressive. Again Dario used a calculating and very complicated plot, even more than in THE BIRD... This time...
Published on Dec 24 2003 by Yannick Villeneuve-Monast

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good
I had read somewhere that Dario himself didn't think highly of this film and Maltin rates it a BOMB. I was sceptical when I rented this one but in the end I was relieved that I did. It's actually quite good and it has a cohesive plot that keeps you guessing 'till the very end. There's no gore here to speak of but Argento keeps things lively from start to finish and the...
Published on Jan. 12 2004 by O. B. Tryggvason


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good, Jan. 12 2004
By 
O. B. Tryggvason (Gardabaer Iceland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I had read somewhere that Dario himself didn't think highly of this film and Maltin rates it a BOMB. I was sceptical when I rented this one but in the end I was relieved that I did. It's actually quite good and it has a cohesive plot that keeps you guessing 'till the very end. There's no gore here to speak of but Argento keeps things lively from start to finish and the actors here are amazingly good (compared to many other Argento films). Check it out, it certainly doesn't deserve a BOMB rating, and also, it seems that Dario is never entirely satisfied with his old films, apperently he can't even watch them on t.v.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Surprising Thriller, Dec 24 2003
I had many difficulties to see this movie from Dario Argento because it was not easy to find it in my country, but when I finally saw it, it really surprised me. Like THE BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE this second film from the Italian Master of Horror is very impressive. Again Dario used a calculating and very complicated plot, even more than in THE BIRD... This time with more colors and a fabulous score from Ennio Morricone. A great thriller even if Dario thinks it is his most disappointing film.
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3.0 out of 5 stars good but not the best of angelo, Dec 23 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Cat O' Nine Tails [Import] (DVD)
i enjoyed the product enough )... pretty much like it was advised and even more... i can say im satisfied
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CAN I OFFER YOU A DRINK ?, April 2 2007
By 
The Critic "Movie Maniac" (Windsor, Ontario) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Dario Argento fans have nothing to fear, Anchor Bay has done justice to this film. The video transfer from Anchor Bay is simply amazing and the digital 2.0 sound is great. Anchor Bay has given Dario Argento fans "The Cat O' Nine Tails" in it's 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen format. The pristine video transfer is presented in all it's remastered, uncut and unedited glory. In my opinion the acting in this film is outstanding for a film from the 1970's. I think all the actors gave a solid performance in their roles and this film kept me guessing until the very end. I knew nothing about this movie until I picked it up at used DVD store, but it has quickly become one of my favorite movies. Whether you're a hardcore or casual Argento fan, this movie is definitely worth seeing. As a bonus some nice extra's have been included in this DVD version.

P.S. Got Milk ?

DVD Features Include:
*Tales of the Cat - interviews with writer/director Dario Argento, co-writer Dardano Sacchetti, and composer Ennio Morricone
* Theatrical trailers
* TV spots
* Radio spots
* Radio interviews with stars James Franciscus and Karl Malden
* Poster & still gallery
* Talent bios
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4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good, Feb. 5 2003
By 
Garry Messick (Boynton Beach, FL USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Cat o' Nine Tails is generally considered second-tier Argento. In fact, Argento himself isn't too jazzed on it. But I find it to be an excellent Hitchcock-inspired suspense film. Yeah, it lacks the stylized, highly imaginative visuals of his later films, but that's not to say it lacks filmmaking verve and invention. Far from it. A must-have if you're an Argento fan, but I suspect it would have more appeal to a general audience than most of his films.
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5.0 out of 5 stars It could happen to you too..., Oct. 19 2002
By 
Second chapter of the so-called "Animal Trilogy" (The Bird with the Crystal Plumage, The Cat O'Nine Tails, Four Flies on Grey Velvet), this film is a little miracle. The possibility that a twist of our genes could lead to madness should keep us far from hospitals for a long time...
Anchor bay Entertainment has provided us with an enriched DVD, full of extras and interesting information. The video is clean and pure, and those colors...so tremendously 70's!!! The audio section comprises three different tracks: English, Italian and French, all of them in Dolby Sorround 2.0.
The extra features are divided into an interesting interview involving director Dario Argento, writer Dardano Sacchetti and music composer Ennio Morricone, different trailers,TV and radio spots, still gallery and talent bios. Last but not least, a juicy double radio interview with James Franciscus and Karl Malden recorded at the beginning of the 70's, when THE CAT landed overseas. Great movie, great package. You won't be disappointed
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3.0 out of 5 stars Lesser Argento, with flashes of customary brilliance, Oct. 16 2002
Rushed into production following the unexpected worldwide success of his directorial debut THE BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE (L'Uccello dalle Piume di Cristallo, 1969), Dario Argento conceived THE CAT O'NINE TAILS (Il Gatto a Nove Code, 1970) as a giallo-thriller in the same vein as its forerunner, and he managed to secure the services of celebrated Hollywood actor Karl Malden (fresh from his appearance in PATTON [1969]) and rising star James Franciscus (TV's "Longstreet"). The resulting film, which the ads claimed was 'nine times more suspenseful' than its predecessor, must be considered a disappointment. In fact, it's no more than a routine potboiler, impeccably photographed and punctuated by a number of stylish set-pieces, but too plodding and aimless for general audience consumption.
Malden plays a blind ex-journalist who overhears a blackmail plot outside a genetics research laboratory and later teams up with fellow reporter Franciscus to investigate a series of murders at the lab, unwittingly placing their own loved ones at the mercy of the rampaging killer. Euro starlet Catherine Spaak (THE LIBERTINE [La Matriarca, 1969]) plays the daughter of a wealthy geneticist (Tino Carraro), initiating a romance with Franciscus which amounts to little more than unnecessary padding (incredibly, Spaak has maintained an active screen career since the mid-1960's, most recently appearing in Adriano Wajskol's JOY SCHERZI DI GIOIA [2002]). More successful as a team, Malden and Franciscus are eminently watchable in sympathetic roles, and cinematographer Enrico Menczer (THE DEAD ARE ALIVE [L'Etrusco Uccide Ancora, 1972]) uses the wide Cromoscope frame to convey the hi-tech world in which Argento's dark-hearted scenario unfolds. Highlights include an unforgettable encounter with the black-gloved assassin in a crowded railway station (brilliantly edited, as usual, by Euro-cult stalwart Franco Fraticelli), and an episode in which Malden and Franciscus break into a tomb at midnight in search of an important clue, only to find themselves in mortal peril... But despite these flashes of brilliance, the film rambles aimlessly from one scene to the next, simmering gently without ever really coming to the boil. It's no surprise that CAT failed to emulate the runaway success of CRYSTAL PLUMAGE when released in 1971.
For die-hard fans, however, Anchor Bay's code-free disc is a must. Letterboxed at 2.35:1 (enhanced for 16:9 TV's) and sporting an extremely subdued 2.0 surround track, the film - which runs 111m 33s on disc - sparkles like new. Like all scope movies on DVD, try if possible to see it on a 16:9 monitor! Extras include brief interviews with Argento (who basically dismisses the film as a lesser effort), screenwriter Dardano Sacchetti and composer Ennio Morricone, alongside contemporary publicity segments with Malden and Franciscus, and a wealth of trailers and advertising materials. Anchor Bay has also included the film's original Italian soundtrack, but the gesture is rendered meaningless by a notable lack of English captions or subtitles!
NB. Though most US ad-mats provide a 'Techniscope' credit for the film, the DVD's closing titles (derived from an Italian source print) reveal that the movie was actually photographed in Cromoscope, which is virtually identical to the Techniscope format anyway.
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4.0 out of 5 stars BAVA LEGACY, Jan. 26 2002
By 
Daniel S. "Daniel" (Geneva, Switzerland) - See all my reviews
Second movie of the "animal title serie" of italian director Dario Argento, the 1971 THE CAT O'NINE TAILS is a giallo, a term coming from the color of a serie of italian mystery books published in the early sixties. A special aesthetics, sex and gory murders characterize this peculiar genre.
Karl Malden, as a blind former journalist, does a terrific job in the movie that has some scenes worthy to appear in an anthology. I particularly liked the scene in the cemetery when James Franciscus is locked in a vault with a dozen coffins. Several years later, Dario Argento would have put some horror ingredients in the scene such as the resurrection of one of the dead but in THE CAT O'NINE TAILS, only the claustrophobic mood of the situation interested him.
I've also liked the artisanal special effects created by Argento which are, in my opinion, as scary and efficient as those generated nowadays by our beloved computers. The italian director shows with his technical skill that he is really Mario Bava's spiritual son.
Anchor Bay's DVD is superb with images without a single white or black spot and a sound that respects the interesting musical score of Ennio Morricone. Extra-features are, for once in an Anchor Bay DVD, multiple. French, italian and english versions, radio spots, trailers, recorded 1971 interviews of Karl Malden and James Franciscus and an indispensable video interview of Dario Argento and Ennio Morricone. A must.
A DVD zone WWF.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Argento, son of Bava!, Nov. 14 2001
By A Customer
This finely crafted film is one of the first great achievements of Dario Argento. It shows close affinity with the "giallo" films of Mario Bava, with similar plotting, photography, and acting.
The print offered by the DVD is quite outstanding. The sharp and rich colours show off to advantage the brilliant art direction and atmospheric outdoor scenes.
The screenplay is by the amazing Dardano Sachetti. Again, the "giallo" tradition established by the elder Bava is upheld with great success.
One cannot compare this film with Argento's later (increasingly violent and disturbing) films. It is not in the same category the deeply twisted SUSPIRIA , DEEP RED, PHENOMENA.
Although this film has disappointed some serious Argento fans, it has considerable merit as a work connecting traditional "giallo" to its later developments both in Italy and America. (Consider the influence of this film on De Palma, for example.)
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3.0 out of 5 stars This Cat Lacks Speed But Has Style, Nov. 5 2001
In the early 70's at Thule Air Base the main activity aside from drinking was going to the movies. A thriller called The Bird With The Crystal Plumage caught my fancy. Then some months later we saw Cat o'Nine Tails. I immediately recognized the director's style but found the movie lacking. My interest in Argento was revived when 4 Flies on Grey Velvet came along.
3 decades later, I've just seen Anchor Bay's stunning reissue of Cat which confirmed my original assessment - stylish, funny ... but lacking the element of suspense or surprise to be found in both Bird and Flies. The cast is excellent.. The DVD is superb with an interesting group of extras including an interview with Argento and radio interviews with Franciscus and Malden. I do recommend the DVD but if you're on a budget, wait for a reissue of 4 Flies or run to your local DVD store today and snap up Deep Red.
Incidentally, since I've been acquainted with Argento's films for so many years, I'm surprised all Americans don't know them. Cat o'Nine Tails just lacks the edge to be found in the rest of his works. Certainly if you like giallo flicks, you'll want to see it at least once.
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Cat O Nine Tails [Blu-ray]
Cat O Nine Tails [Blu-ray] by Dario Argento (Blu-ray - 2011)
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