D is for Darn It!

So I was supposed to darn something. To mend. But I failed. But I’m going to succeed in my failure by talking about That Darn Cat! This is a movie I’ve never seen. It was made once in the 60s and once in the 90s and I missed it both times. In the 60s because I wasn’t born yet and in the 90s because I was probably too busy watching Sister, Sister or eating McDonald’s.

But I’ve always been intrigued by films that use punctuation in the title, although upon the most cursory of investigations I see the 90s version got rid of the exclamation point. Children of the 90s were far more sophisticated than those of the 60s and would’ve found an exclamation point juvenile. Unnecessary.

In any event, it turns out the movie is about a mischievous cat who has a run-in with some criminals and  kidnapped woman. The woman etches most of the word “HELP” on the back of the watch and hooks it to the cat. The cat goes home and the kid the cat belongs to immediately takes the scratched watch to the cops or FBI or something and they immediately take the case. The plot is basically the same in both films as far as I can tell from reading brief summaries.

This is how law enforcement works folks. You don’t need to have an actual crime or suspicion or anything. You just need a cat! And being Hayley Mills probably helps. Or Christina Ricci.

However, while a cat and a teenage girl are all the FBI may need to get on board, it should be noted movie viewers are not so easily swayed. Rotten Tomatoes gives the original TDC! an impressive 93% and is reviewed as “delightful mystery-comedy!” and “wonderful witty froth.” However, the remake with Christina? It fares far more poorly with an appalling 13% on the tomato meter. One audience member said, “The film’s cast is horrible in their performances and the film’s plot misfires big time and it really doesn’t have anything to be entertaining for the viewer.” Sheesh! Tell us how you REALLY feel – right, girls?!?! Amiright!?!?

So, basically, I didn’t see this movie. I don’t know much of anything about it. Should you see it? I’m gonna say maybe. And which one should you see? Having almost no actual opionion on the film, I’m gonna say go with the one that for you holds greater cat cuteness.

I might go with Ricci’s cat, generally being a person who prefers fatter and fluffier cats. But looking at Mills and her puss, it’s hard to say. You be the judges, friends. You be the cat judges.

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