Parents' Guide to

That Darn Cat! (1965)

By Michael Scheinfeld, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Amusing but long romp for both adults and kids.

Movie G 1965 116 minutes
That Darn Cat! (1965) Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 10 parent reviews

age 12+

Uncomfortable male/female dynamics

I did not find this appropriate for younger kids. The way the females are treated by males in this movie is creepy and not appropriate. There are some intimate advances from a boyfriend that I feel like should have been included in the overall rating. I found it extremely uncomfortable watching with middle school students.
age 13+

Enjoyable, but scary

This is a movie about a woman being held captive at gunpoint, after an offscreen bank robbery and kidnapping. The woman's dire situation, including the gun threat, is shown onscreen in multiple scenes. While scenes with the cat, Hayley Mills, and the central female characters' male love/carpooling interests, do offer comic relief, there is nothing funny about the victim or her captivity. For this reason, I am really surprised that the movie is recommended for seven year olds. There are Studio Ghibli films on this site that are not recommended for such a young age, but which are far less serious and scary. Nonetheless, my rating is of the film, not of Common Sense's age recommendation. It is a fun film that viewers from early teen age and up will enjoy. Unlike some other reviewers, I did not find it too long.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (10 ):
Kids say (5 ):

Despite being overlong and leisurely paced, That Darn Cat is an amusing and enjoyable romp that will appeal to both adults and kids. Hayley Mills was Disney's biggest child-star of the 1960s and it's easy to see why. Graduating to a teen role here after several movies playing a child, she's as bright, charming, and precocious as ever, while never taking herself too seriously. Dean Jones, who also starred in a string of Disney family films, demonstrates his deft touch as a light comedian as the bumbling Zeke. The supporting cast is stocked with familiar character actors who will bring a smile to the face of anyone who grew up in the '60s.

Director Robert Stevenson, also a longtime Disney associate, expertly mixes slapstick hijinks with mystery and suspense. The scenes in which the FBI try to tail D.C. through the neighborhood at night are very funny -- as the feline encounters angry dogs, runs through a drive-in movie theater, and makes the G-men look more like the Keystone Kops. The movie is definitely from an earlier, fantasized era when everyone was clean-cut, but it's good fun for the whole family.

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