The Cat (1992)
Director: Lam Nai-Choi
Starring: Gloria Yip Wan-Yee, Waise Lee Chi-Hung, Christine Ng Wing-Mei, Lau Siu-Ming, Lawrence Lau Sek-Yin, Phillip Kwok Chun-Fung
A science fiction story about a magical space cat based on the work of Hong Kong science fiction writer Wisely (Waise Lee Chi-Hung) sees the author investigating a mysterious old man and a young woman with a cat and being drawn into an adventure involving space demons and the like, your normal every day occurrence it seems as there are not tons of media when a monster appears at the museum and eats the guards.
The cat gets a lot of screen time and is not the ordinary cat is seems as Wisely tries to get the best dog he can to fight it when he thinks it is evil, only to find the cat beats it and chews off its own tail to escape.
The heroic space aliens arrive back at Wisely’s place in time to stop the cat scratching him to death so they can retrieve its tail, which re-attaches via space magic naturally. Wisely’s ex-police friends have been eaten by the other evil space aliens and attack his house. Luckily they have access to dozens of bottles of vodka to use as Molotov cocktails and flee the scene.
The final battle in the restaurant and rooftop is something to behold and naturally all giant evil space demons explode into glitter when a cat goes down their throat with a giant glowing stone.
The main problem with this movie is that I can describe it all I want and it does not really match up to the experience of watching it. The director’s other movie of note is Story of Ricky and also the Seventh of Curse and Erotic Ghost Story.
Some people do not do a lot of work, but what they do leave behind is certainly memorable as is the case here. Not sure if many people will get the chance to see this movie as it is becoming hard to find these days and I had to get the VCD version. The clip of the cat vs dog fight in the junkyard is up online but it doesn’t really show you how weird the rest of the movie is.
I don’t agree with other reviewers saying this movie was meant to be a comedy that forgot to put any jokes in. Having seen some other Hong Kong horror movies from the 1980s they were going for a particular style and have succeeded in that sense. There is just not that much around that matches up to it so it seems to be sitting in a category off on its own. Science fiction is quite thin on the ground in Hong Kong movies.
Viewed alongside the Seventh Curse or Story of Ricky this movie fits into that time period perfectly. There is even a reunification joke about looking forward to 1997 in there as was the usual for this time period.
There was a huge spike in production for Hong Kong movies in the 80s and late 90s and while this movie is not anywhere near one of the classics it is still unique and worth looking up if you are a fan of the weird.