Cat City (Macskafogó
) is a 1986 Hungarian animated film created at Pannonia Film Studio
about mice being oppressed by cats.
The movie opens with a Star Wars
-syle text scroll
, which tells the main situation
: In year 80 AM Anno Mickey Mouse
, the mice of Planet X are threatened by humiliation and total apocalypse. The well-organized, fully equipped gangs of evil cats are aiming to wipe out the mouse civilization totally, not caring for the old conventions between mice and cats. But in the last moment, when the mouse leaders are beginning to consider leaving the planet, a new hope rises...
The film is a parody of several famous feature films, mainly the James Bond
series. The main plot is about a special spy who is sent to the city of "Pokyo" to get the secret plan of a machine which could save the mouse civilization. Of course, the cats don't want this to happen, and send some rat gangsters to stop him, who don't always prove as efficient as their presentation showed.
In 2007, the film was followed by Macskafogó 2: A Sátán macskája
, a sequel that focuses on a mouse journalist, Stanley, who finds a tribe of untamed cats in the jungles of "Pafrika". The cats summon a demon cat, Moloch, to take the world back from the mice.
The film provides examples of:
- The Ace: Nick Grabowski.
- Affectionate Parody: Mostly of James Bond and western spy/action movies but basically everything that was popular in the 80s.
- Always Chaotic Evil: The cats, except for Cathy.
- Alternate Calendar: According to the text scroll, the movie sets in 80 AMM (After Mickey Mouse).
- The Amazon: The jungle where Lazy Dick's plane crashes. It must be Planet X's equivalent of Central America, as implied by the Mayincatec pyramids and the bats being Mexican bandits.
- Animals Not to Scale: There is no established hight scale between the characters except a vague mouse<rat<cat one. Best seen in the case of the rats who can look barely bigger than a mouse in one scene and almost as tall as the cats in the other. See Your Size May Vary for more detail.
- Artificial Limbs: Teufel has a metallic left hand with really sharp claws.
- Bad Boss: Teufel to Safranek and Gatto to Teufel. Implied that Gatto tolerates failure even worse than Teufel, when Safranek immediately accepts Teufel's punishment instead of risking Gatto hearing about it.
- Bandito: The bats.
- Bank Robbery: The film opens with one.
- Bat out of Hell: Subverted. While initially posing a threat to Lazy Dick (threatening him to suck his blood), the bat bandits eventually befriend him.
- Big Bad: Mr. Gatto
- Big Red Button: There's one in the rats' Cool Car.
- Bilingual Bonus: Lots of it. Teufel's name is a classic example: it means "Devil" in German, but sounds like "tejfel", which means "sour cream" in Hungarian. For further examples see Hurricane of Puns below.
- Body Horror: Though there's no blood or visible damage, it's still rather disturbing to see Grabowski with a lock through his lips during the climax at the party.
- Bottomless Magazines: The battle scene near the end of the movie.
- Brainwashing for the Greater Good: At the end of the film, this happens to the cats defeated by the Cat Catcher.
- Brainy Brunette: Pissy, the Only Sane Woman among the rats.
- Brought to You by the Letter "S": Grabowski has a letter "G" on the shirt he wears in most of the film.
- Butt Monkey: Teufel regularly vents his anger on poor Safranek.
- Card-Carrying Villain: The rats. They have an entire music video to promote themselves as gangsters. Which might be the invoking of this trope as they try to get work with it. Later they also mention that their choices are this or jumping around in a ballet making them pretty much Punch Clock Villains. (For those curious Balettpatkány - Ballet Rat is slang for novice ballet dancer. Also their life choices being arts or crime pretty much underlines that they meant to be Romani stereotypes albeit one not well known in the west.)
- A Cat Named Cat: Mr. Gatto. Cathy may also qualify.
- Cats Are Mean: The Movie.
- The only character who subverts this trope is Cathy, the daughter of Safranek.
- Cat Stereotype: Mr. Gatto, the high-class mafia boss, is a fat white Persian. Teufel, the dark grey cat, certainly means bad luck. Safranek, the ginger cat is the most humble and the least mean of the main cat characters.
- The Cavalry: The attack of Lazy Dick and the bat bandits on Mr. Gatto's party.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Lazy Dick and the bat bandits. The bats are literal gunmen.
- Chekhov's Skill: Lazy Dick's musical skills, which earn him the friendship of the bats, and ultimately help to defeat the cats. Also, Grabowski's Photographic Memory becomes useful once the cats destroy the blueprint for the Cat Catcher.
- Children Are Innocent: Cathy the kitten is the only feline friendly to mice.
- Cigar Chomper: Teufel.
- Cool Car: The car of the rat gangsters. Too bad they can't use it properly.
- Cut Himself Shaving: Safranek must do this all the time as his boss, Teufel brutally injures him for every mistake he makes, and pretends not to know about it subsequently.
Teufel : Not another accident? Oh dear. What happened to you this time, Safranek?
Safranek: * gulps* I was shaving, sir.
Teufel: But, your hand!
Safranek: That's what I was holding the razor with, sir.
- Cute Kitten: Cathy.
- Cyborg: Grabowski has a camera eye (that's Photographic Memory for you) and a chest safe at least and the dialog also hints on enhanced strength and senses.
- Dangerously Genre Savvy: Teufel immediately saw through the flaws of the experiments Safranek presented to him, as well as the mice's plan to help Grabowski get the plans into safety, and intercepted him on his way.
- Dangerously Short Skirt: Pissy, the brunette rat girl wears one, resulting in many panty shots.
- David Versus Goliath: Around the end of the movie, Grabowski gets in a melee with Teufel.
- Deadpan Snarker: Many characters to some degree (Grabowski, the mouse police chief etc.). But the queen of this trope is Candy. She rarely talks but almost every line she has is snark.
- Deus ex Machina: Blatantly used near the end, with the bats coming out of nowhere and saving the day.
- Disney Acid Sequence: The Four Gangsters song has much more surreal animation than the actual movie. Justified in that it's a video clip watched by the cats, thus may involve visual effects. Someone worded it as that video is 100% unadulterated Camp.
- The Dragon: Teufel.
- Dub Name Change: Most of the characters have different names in the English dub.
- Nick Grabowski — Gary Gumshoe
- Mr. Fritz Teufel — Mr. D
- Safranek — Tweed
- Lusta Dick — Billy Bugle
- Buddy — Burns
- Billy — Bones
- Pissy — Candy
- Pukie - Cookie
- Dumb Blonde: Cookie the girl rat and her Spear Counterpart Billy.
- Everything Trying to Kill You: Lazy Dick's first impression of The Amazon. Things that tried to kill him include: the road (actually a snake), the plantlife, the river and the locals.
- Evil Is Bigger: Both cats and rats are much bigger than mice.
- Expy/No Celebrities Were Harmed: Might be unintentional, but Lazy Dick looks suspiciously similar to Lajos Galambos, a famous Hungarian trumpet musician, including that Dick's favourite music instrument is a trumpet.
- Eyepatch of Power: Teufel wears one.
- Fanservice: The cat lady at Gatto's party, wearing a babydoll, sings a rather suggestive song.
- Fantastic Racism: Cats and mice hate each other. But also Mr. Teufel gets accused being prejudiced against rats by their agent.
- Fat Bastard: Gatto. Also a Fat Cat.
- Faux Affably Evil: Teufel, who acts cordially towards Safranek... when he's not torturing him for his mistakes. He even acts like he doesn't know what caused his injuries, and pretends to feel sorry for him.
- Femme Fatale: Pissy/Candy's specialty according to the music video. We don't see much of this, but she is effective enough in being a criminal that we're inclined to believe her.
- Fully Dressed Cartoon Animal: Majority of the characters apply to this trope.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Check this music video. Especially the bed scene at 2:56.
- Good Animals, Evil Animals: Mice are good, cats and rats are bad. Bats are creepy, but ultimately heroic.
- Go Through Me: When cats break into a mouse bank with a tank, the clerk shouts: "No! Over my dead body!" The tank promptly shoots him.
- Guns Akimbo: Some of the bat bandits uses two guns while flying, holding the guns in their legs.
- Have a Gay Old Time: Sergeant Lazy Dick. (In Hungarian, of course, his name doesn't have a double meaning).
- His name may actually be a German Bilingual Bonus, where "dick" means "fat".
- Humongous Mecha: the Cat Catcher, which is an enormous robot bulldog.
- Hungry Jungle: The Amazon is portrayed like this. Snakes, caimans, mouse-eating plants, Inevitable Waterfall, and vampire bat banditos who will either shoot you or suck your blood. Lazy Dick only survives because he befriends the bats.
- Hurricane of Puns: In the Hungarian version.
- The secret password for the mice's council is "Egy aprócska kalapocska, benne csacska macska mocska" [say: edy op-roch-ko kolo-poch-ko, beh-neh choch-ko mach-ko moch-ko] (meaning "A tiny little hat with a silly cat's dirt in it").
- The original title "Macskafogó", although literally it means "Cat catcher", comes from the word "Egérfogó" meaning "Mouse trap", changing the word "egér" (mouse) into "macska" (Cat).
- The Police chief, Bob Poljakow promises that he would recruit again Grabowski and "bring back Cincinnatus from the yoke" — a historic reference to Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus, this patriotic elderly Roman patrician who left his plow in the field to come to Rome's rescue in its moment of need around 458 BC. However, "cin" or "cin-cin" is the equivalent of "squeaking" in Hungarian...
- The boss of the cats (the fat white one) is called Giovanni Gatto. Gatto is an Italian word, it means cat in English (and macska in Hungarian). Also, Giovanni is the Italian equivalent of the Hungarian first name János (John in English) – and if a Hungarian says "macskajancsi" (Johnny Cat in English), it means jerk, lame, loser, or a coward. Also, there existed a mafia clan named Gatti in New York.
- The daughter of Safranek, the lame assistant of Mr. Teufel is called CAThy.
- Mr. Teufel's name. Teufel means devil in German, but it's also pronounced very similarly to "tejfel" (sour cream), which cats like a lot.
- The name of Maxipotzac, the obese chief of the Mexican bats, is of course a play on "maxipocak", or "maxi-belly".
- I Know You Know I Know: Cookie delivers this line, pondering if Grabowski knows they're after him.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: The four rats.
- Inevitable Waterfall: Sgt. Lazy Dick ends up in one in the jungle. He tries to avoid it by playing his trumpet to blow his boat back. But he eventually gives up... because he's out of tunes.
- Jerk Ass: Every single cat character, except Cathy.
- The rats aren't particularly friendly either.
- Laughably Evil: The rats, full time.
- Leaf Boat: Lazy Dick improvises one for himself to ride a river in The Amazon.
- Lean and Mean: Mr. Teufel.
- MacGuffin: The Cat Cather plans.
- Mouse-Eating Plant: Lazy Dick encounters one in the jungle.
- Mass "Oh, Crap!": The cats' reaction to the enter of the Cat Cather.
- Master of Disguise: Billy boasts about being one in the music video. In practice... not likely.
- Mission Control Is Off Its Meds: The reason why the rats can't operate their Cool Car properly is because it comes with a Door Stopper manual and helpline like this. Its quirks range from the annoying like addressing any person as "ma'am" to giving advice like "Press the red button and rest in peace". Turns out Grabowski hacked the system and trolled them from the beginning.
- More Dakka: The battle scene again.
- Mouse World: Subverted, since the Mouse World exists not on the edge of the human, but the cat society.
- Music Soothes the Savage Beast: Well, not really but it can convince a bunch of bandit vampire bats to not have you for dinner because they absolutely need you in their band!
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Teufel means "devil" in German.
- Never Smile at a Crocodile: Lazy Dick encounters a caiman in The Amazon.
- Nice Mice
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Safranek was the Chew Toy through the whole movie, but near the end Teufel assigned him to coordinate the battle, and he proved to be frighteningly effective.
- One-Man Band: Due to their tight budget, the entire orchestra of the mouse police consists of one mouse, Lazy Dick.
- Only Sane Man: Buddy thinks he's the one among the rats, but really Tissi is the one.
- Opening Scroll: The film opens with one.
- Our Vampires Are Different: They are vampire bat banditos.
- Petting Zoo People: The characters are Borderline Petting Zoo People.
- Photographic Memory: Grabowski's Chekhov's Skill. Might be a literal example (he seems to have a camera eye, although it might just be a visual gag).
- Quirky Miniboss Squad: The rats. The boss who believes to be surrounded by idiots while not that bright himself, two Dumb Blondes, and a Hyper Competent Sidekick.
- Ramming Always Works: Grabowski sunk the cat pirates' submarine by ramming it with the ship they thought to have captured, and had in a tow.
- Red Right Hand: Exaggerated with Teufel, almost to the level of parody. He has an Eyepatch of Power (with a ruby under it, nonetheless), a robotic hand, a torn ear, and even his tail seems to have its tip cut off.
- Ruthless Modern Pirates: The pirate cats attacking Grabowski's ship. Other than having a Jolly Roger flag on their submarine, there's nothing romantic about them.
- Seldom Seen Species: Lazy Dick encounters a caiman in The Amazon. Caimans are rarely used in media due to being much smaller than crocodiles or alligators. However, since Dick is a mouse, the caiman can still pose a great threat to him.
- Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The bossy and arrogant Buddy opposed to the Dumb Blonde guy Billy.
- Slice of Life: The main plot lines are constantly interrupted by scenes of average mice living their everyday life, who are then abused, robbed and threatened by cats.
- Scream Discretion Shot: Whenever Teufel vents his anger on Safranek.
- Shout-Out: The film opens with a Star Wars-style text scroll.
- When the lab mouse defeats the cat hit by the Shrink Ray, he does Tarzan's yell.
- Shrink Ray: The cats test one at the beginning of the film, so they could get into mouseholes. It works, but it also weakens the test subject who's easily beaten up by a mouse.
- Smart People Play Chess: Grabowski beats himself in chess in eight out of ten games. In the other two, he wins.
- The Stoic Pissy and Grabowski.
- The Syndicate: Cat organization.
- Stocking Mask: Buddy says that they'll have to use it if they work in public. Cookie complains that she only has fishnets.
- Submarine Pirates: The pirate cats use a submarine rather than a ship.
- Tempting Fate: At the beginning, a bank clerk assures a worrying client that to this bank, cats could only break into with a tank. Guess what happens next.
- Thirty Seconds Over Pokyo: Portrayed as a hi-tech metropolis, home of the professor designing a Humongous Mecha, an attractive female assistant in kimono, and a cat trying to catch Grabowski with karate moves using chopsticks.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: While both rat girls are hyper sexualized, but Cookie is Dumb Blonde, girly and environmentally conscious (she is almost Valley Girl) wile Candy is Stoic, Hyper Competent and a legitimate badass.
- Too Dumb to Live: Billy. When the car gets stuck in a pit, Buddy asks the computer what to do:
Computer: In this situation, push the red button and rest in peace.
Billy: (pushing the button) For what? (car explodes)
- What Happened To The Cat?: The lady cat singing at the party is bitten by one of the bats and apparently passes out from blood loss. She isn't seen in the finale, leaving one to wonder if she died or not.
- World of Funny Animals: A world inhabited by anthropomorphic cats, mice, rats and bats. (Non-anthropomorphic animals appear in The Amazon.)
- You Dirty Rat: The four gangsters.
- You Have Failed Me: Subverted with Teufel and Safranek. Mr. Gatto, however, has the mounted heads of Teufel's predecessors on his wall.
- Your Size May Vary: The size difference between cats and mice varies. Most jarringly, Grabowski fits comfortably into a bottle that one of the rats drank empty in one scene, and later stands face to face with him, coming up to the rat's shoulder.
The sequel provides examples of:
- Animals Not to Scale: Torzonborz is a badger about the same size as a mouse. Justified since she's a mouse in disguise.
- Also the film begins with Stanley, a mouse, cutting his way trough the jungle, and accidentally chopping off the tail of a leopard and a python that are in scale with him as if he was a human. Then he runs into the cats, are as big compared to him as real life cats compared to real life mice - which means they're gigantic compared to the leopard. Made even weirder, when the cats leave the jungle and enter the savannah, they're immediately attacked by a rhino, and later by an elephant herd, that are in scale to them, as if the cats were humans.
- Applied Phlebotinum: The cats are forced to wear ribbons, which are oppressing their violent nature.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The following exchange
Grabowski after watching a recording of Moloch breaking into the "civilization" Did you notice anything strange?
Edlington Strange? Well besides cats breaking through our outer defense, and pressing two of our guards into a DVD, nothing!
Harvey Those cats are not wearing ribbons.
Edlington Harvey! No, you're right, they aren't wear ribbons.
Grabowski True, but what I meant was that giant cat had red eyes. However only albino cats have red eyes, but there is no such thing as a black albino.
- Ass in a Lion Skin: Torzonborz, a mouse disguised as a badger.
- Conspicuous CG: Several examples, the titular robot dog being the most obvious.
- Contrasting Sequel Main Character: Grabowski was an international super-agent, The Ace and The Stoic. Stanley is a journalist and a talkative Guile Hero.
- Darker and Edgier
- Darkest Africa: Pafrika.
- Demoted to Extra: Almost the entire cast of the original movie, Grabowski being the only one that has any influence on the plot.
- Devil but No God
- Family-Unfriendly Violence: Stanley accidentally cutting off a leopard's and a snake's tail.
- The battle scene between the rebelling cats and the mice is a lot more violent than the first movies's battle, including a scene, when a cat is shown to be preparing to eat a mouse child alive.
- Fix Fic: One of the reasons people dislike the movie because it fixed what wasn't broken (the fate of the cats) according to most. Also it ends with a signing of a peace treaty between cats and mice which for people remembering the first movie's opening text meant: Here We Go Again... with all the problems this implies.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Nothing too raunchy, mostly just quick, juvenile gags, like the gay soldier saying goodbye to his male partner, or the random nude mouse girl that someone throws into the air.
- Gonk: Cookie, the blond rat girl from the first movie became one after the twenty years Time Skip. Made even worse by the fact, she's even more Stripperific now.
- Hurricane of Puns: Even more than in the original film.
- Hollywood Natives: The mice and cats in Pafrika both show signs of this, walking around in grass skirts and feathered headdresses. They look very dated for a movie made in 2007.
- Interspecies Romance: Lazy Dick is married to the sister of Maxipotzac, a vampire bat.
- Karma Houdini: Moloch and the city cats get away scot-free with the carnage and destruction they caused. The wild cats, who summoned Moloch, on the other hand are Dragged Off to Hell by him.
- Medium Awareness / Leaning on the Fourth Wall: The following exchanges:
Chief Cat: Did you notice, that this herd was really only one bison filmed many times?
Mouse soldier: Sir, in another movie, Sir.
Stanley as Grabowski paints a large number "2" on the chest of the Cat Catcher: What are you doing?
: This way everyone will now, that this is the Cat Catcher 2
- Misplaced Wildlife: A sloth in Pafrika.
- Mythology Gag: The sequel opens with a Star Wars text roll just like the original. This time, it is pushed in space by a pair of astronaut cats.
- Nature Hero: Torzonborz.
- Not So Different: So what did the mice do with their freedom won in the first movie? Enslave the cats of course.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Moloch has red eyes, one of them being bigger than the other and resembling the Eye of Sauron.
- Satan: Mentioned a few times, under the name of Cicufer. Moloch is his servant.
- Samus is a Girl: Torzonborz is Grabowski's daughter.
- Shout-Out: More than in the original film... to Tarzan, The Lion King, The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Godzilla VS Mechagodzilla, just to mention a few. The title (meaning Satan's Cat) itself is a Shout-Out to The Hound Of The Baskervilles (called A Sátán kutyája (Satan's Hound) in Hungarian).
- Summon Bigger Cat: Mioka after learning that the mice had defeated the cats, summons Moloch who is a black cat ten times taller than normal cats, with red eyes, who can regenerate his body, and shoots laser beams from his finger tips.
- Time Skip: The second movie takes place 20 years after the first one. Almost all characters are redesigned to look older.
- Transforming Mecha: The Cat Catcher is revealed to be one near the end of the movie.
- Vine Swing: Torzonborz is a Funny Animal parody of Tarzan, so he often travels like this.
- Witch Doctor: Mioka, the shaman of the cat tribe.