Film: That Darn Cat!

That Darn Cat! is a 1965 American Walt Disney Productions feature film starring Hayley Mills and Dean Jones in a story about bank robbers, a kidnapping and a mischievous cat. The film was based on the book Undercover Cat by Gordon and Mildred Gordon and was directed by Robert Stevenson. The title song was written by the Sherman Brothers and sung by Bobby Darin. That Darn Cat! was the last of six films Hayley Mills made for the Disney Studios. The 1997 remake featured a cameo appearance by Dean Jones. The remake's main star was Christina Ricci.

"That Darn Cat", or "DC", is a wily, adventurous Siamese tomcat who lives with two young women, suburbanite sisters Ingrid (Dorothy Provine) and Patti Randall (Hayley Mills), whose parents are traveling abroad at the time of the story. One night, while making his rounds around town, DC follows Iggy (Frank Gorshin), a bank robber, to an apartment where he and his partner, Dan (Neville Brand), are holding bank employee Margaret Miller (Grayson Hall) hostage, calling her "Moms" in the process. The robbers let the cat in and feed him. When Margaret is alone for a moment, she scratches "help" into the wristband of her watch, places it around the cat's neck, and releases him into the outdoors. At home, Patti discovers the watch and calls the FBI. Supervisor Newton (Richard Eastham) assigns Zeke Kelso (Dean Jones) to follow DC in hope that the cat will lead them back to the robbers' hideout. Kelso sets up a headquarters in the Randalls' house and assigns a team to keep the cat under surveillance, but DC manages to elude them. Eventually a bugging device is implanted in DC's collar and the cat leads Zeke into a comical chase at a Drive-In Theater and several backyards. Eventually, Patti and Zeke rescue Margaret and bring the robbers to justice.

A subplot involves a romance between Patti's sister Ingrid and Gregory Benson (Roddy McDowall). Cast includes Elsa Lanchester and William Demarest as nosy neighbors the MacDougalls; Ed Wynn as Mr. Hofstedder, Richard Deacon as a drive-in theater manager, Liam Sullivan as Graham, Iris Adrian as the landlady, and Tom Lowell as Patti's boyfriend, Canoe.


Alternative Title(s):

That Darn Cat