Thursday, August 16, 2007

Season 2 Episode 11
“The Black Cat”
Teleplay by Dennis Paoli and Stuart Gordon; based on the short story by Edgar Allan Poe; directed by Stuart Gordon

In this Stuart Gordon film, adapted from the Edgar Allan Poe tale, Poe (played by Re-Animator’s Jeffrey Combs) finds himself smack dab in the middle of one of his own macabre yarns.
With the help of a credible Combs (who shows us the tortured, boozed-out soul that was Poe), this turns out to be one of the more effective films of this season. What’s noteworthy here is that, aside from the blood and the grue, what also supplies the chills in “The Black Cat” is the horror of trying to create art in the pitiless face of poverty and true human suffering. We also become witness to the trap popularity can become and how any artist can be so easily pigeonholed by the demands of the market.

Though the ending (which does not really come as any huge surprise) does dampen the proceedings somewhat, “The Black Cat” is still a sight better than some of the other offerings of Season 2.
Members of PETA and PAWS should be advised though: this is one film you should probably steer clear of.

(The Black Cat DVD cover art courtesy of

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