Film / Kitten With a Whip

Kitten with a Whip is a 1965 exploitation film starring Ann-Margret and John Forsythe.

Forsythe plays David Stratton, a candidate running for the U.S. Senate who finds that Jody, an escaped juvenile delinquent (Ann-Margret) broke into his house while he was away. A combination of crocodile tears followed by extortion ends up with him trying to keep Jody both in his house and away from the press, the police and his family. Things get worse when Jody's gang of friends shows up, and before he knows it he's held hostage taking a wounded man to Tijuana for off-the-record medical treatment. Where do Jody's sympathies really lie? And how is David going to keep all of this from ruining his campaign?

For the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version, please go to the episode recap page.

Kitten with a Whip contains the following tropes:

  • Artistic License Medicine: Ron rapidly nearly bleeds to death from a straight razor cut in his upper triceps.
  • "Blackmail" Is Such an Ugly Word: Jody tells Stratton that if he calls the police on her, she'll accuse him of rape — or, at the very least, claim to be his mistress, threatening both his home life and his career. "I'll be a celebrity! And SO WILL YOU!"
  • Car Chase: The climax of the film, ending with "Rocks Fall, *Almost* Everybody Dies."
  • Delinquents: Jody and her "friends."
  • Deus ex Machina: The Senate candidate is exonerated from even the risk of suspicion at the last moment, when Jody "explains" that he was an innocent in the ending car crash with her dying breath.
  • Dull Surprise: Stratton's facial expressions and vocal tone rarely change from "vaguely irritated."
  • Extreme Doormat: The movie ends in a half-dozen places if Stratton grows a spine. Agaist Ron and Buck, at least, it's justifiable, since they're younger and stronger (and more numerous) than he note .
    • Also, Midge. Almost every line out of her mouth is either submissive to Buck or telling Jody how great she is.
  • The Farmer and the Viper: Zig-zagged, but ultimately averted.
  • Honor Before Reason: Stratton refusing to tell Ron and Buck where Jody was hiding, putting himself (deeper) in harm's way, despite what Jody had done to all three of them.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Played with. At first, Ron tells them (and demonstrates when Buck punches him) that he feels no pain; later he gets gashed with a straight razor and calmly announces "I'm dyin' in a rush." However, as they try to drive him to an off-the-grid medic in Mexico, his bravado begins to crumble.
    Buck: Come on, buddy, 'no pain', 'no pain'!
    Ron: Sorry, buddy, not working! [takes a slug from a bottle]
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Jody (with a triple-helping of "manic")
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Even Jody doesn't seem to know which parts of her past were real and which ones she made up.
  • Mood-Swinger: Jody, sometimes mid-sentence.
  • Moving the Goalposts: Every time Stratton gives in to Jody's demands, she just demands more, because she realizes that her threat of "cry rape" gives her unlimited power over him.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: An earnest desire to help a troubled youth lands Stratton in all sorts of trouble.
  • Psychotic Lover: Jody.
  • Sexophone: Played throughout the movie.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: The Played for Drama scene of Jody returning to David's house even after he sent her away is hard to take seriously when the Looney Tunes short "Canned Feud" is playing (loudly) in the background on a TV.
    Mike: Carl Stalling's in his house!
  • Villain Protagonist: "Troubled" bad girl Jody.