The Shadow of the Cat (1961) - full transcript

A female house cat sees her mistress murdered by her husband and two servants, and becomes ferociously bent on revenge.

Once upon a midnight dreary

while I pondered weak and weary

over many aquatint curious volume

of forgotten lore.

While I nodded nearly napping

suddenly there came a tapping,

as if someone gently rapping,

rapping at my chamber door.

"Tis some visitor," I muttered,

tapping at my chamber door.

Only this and nothing more.

Ah distinctly I remember

it was in the bleak December

and each separate dying ember

wrote its ghost upon the floor

eagerly I wished the morrow

vainly I had sought to borrow

from my books surcease of sorrow

sorrow for lost Lenore.

For the rare and radiant maiden

who the angles named Lenore.

Nameless here forevermore.

It's a funny old house, isn't it Tabitha?

So many strange sounds.

Old creaking boards, nothing else.

I have done Walter.

I've clone everything.

The cat.

Was it up there?


All right, Clara.

What was that noise?

It's the cat.


If Ella disappeared three days ago,

why didn't you tell us before, Walter?

- How would you assume
she's officially missing?

Whatever you assume,

I want nothing published
in your newspaper.

You know what Ella's like, inspector.

Been mad at me for days.

Wouldn't budge from
that old attic of hers.

Thought she might have
spent the night up there.

Damn fool woman.

- That she didn't appear
for meals for two days.

Didn't it make you suspicious?

No, she's been like this before.

Sneaks down to the kitchen when
she thinks nobody's looking.

Oh I went up there,
tried to reason with her.

Door was unlocked.

No sign of her.

Bed hadn't been slept in.

I began to get worried.

Andrew went out looking for her.

Nope, no sign.

Do you know if she packed anything?

Any of her clothes missing?

Not that I'm aware of.

Must have got anything she stood up in.

- I don't en capsulize
on this Mr. Veneble,

but I do think a paragraph might help.

- I told you before, Latimer,
you keep out of this!

I don't want any fuss.

Been enough scandal
connected with this family.

Now you find her.

No telling what could
have happened to her.

Well I'll send out a local alarm.

There's no doubt she'll
turn up when she's ready.

I hope so.

I hope so.

I shan't have a moment's piece of mind

until you do find her.

Can't sleep at night thinking about it.

Hard, under doctor's orders.

It's very hard.

Kitty, kitty, Tabitha.

Tabitha, Tabitha!

What's wrong with Tabitha?

Cat's got a mean streak in her.

Mean as a mistress.

She can't be very hungry.

That's a healthy piece of
meat Andrew's trying to-

Never mind about that cat!

You find Ella!

Calm down, Walter.

You'll work yourself up
into one of your attacks.

I'll get on to it as soon as I get back.

- I hope you told them none
of her clothes were missing.

That's all right Clara.

They know Ella's eccentric.

Anything you tell them
about Ella, they'll believe.

Shall we be in the papers?

I don't know.

If any of her friends start calling

tell them I'm not available.

I'm too upset to talk.

I'm not well, you understand?


It's no use.

The cat won't come near me.

She doesn't trust you anymore.

She saw.

You'll have to get her now, Andrew.

She knows.

I've known her to do some unpredictable

things in her time

but I can't understand why she
should disappear like this.

I hope she finally walked out on Walter.

She's been threatening to do it

ever since I've known them.

Ah, she never meant a word of it.

Walter's not such a bad sort.

Would you be so easy on him?

It's common knowledge he only
married her for her money.

He spent the best part of 30 years

trying to swindle her out of it.

Old Ella, Ella was too shrewd for him.

Andrew, Andrew, help me!

Andrew, help me!

- Thought you knew those
floorboards aren't safe.

I'd forgotten.

I just came up here to have a look around.

Let's get out of here.

Time to send for Miss Ella's niece.

Do you think Miss Elizabeth will come?

She'll come all right.

She was Miss Ella's favorite.

She'll be the first to question the will.

If I can get her under this
roof, I can deal with her.


Yes sir?

You can send her a telegram.

I'll give you her address.

Better get it off right away.

It's down there.

Andrew, leave it.

Tomorrow morning we'll get some men in.

Nevermind about tomorrow morning.

If it's in the basement,
we've got it trapped.

Let's get down there.

I'd like to reign it.

I hate it.

Kitty, kitty?

Kitty, kitty, kitty?

Kitty kitty?

Kitty kitty?


Where are you Andrew?



It's over there!



You fool!

I almost had it!

So did I.

Well go do something useful!

Go and get on.


Leave the door!

Kitty, kitty.

Kitty, kitty, kitty.

Look, look.

Look, look, look, look.

Look, look.



He's asleep now,

but he must be kept very quiet.

Another attack might prove fatal.

- Quiet, with that animal
driving us all crazy?

I beg your pardon but
since Miss Ella disappeared

that animal's been like the devil.

Stalking around the house,

spitting and snarling.

Tabitha was always a gentle creature.

You sure you're not imagining this?

Excuse me sir,

I'm not imagining this, am I?

- Clara, I think we should
consider engaging a nurse.

- Miss Elizabeth, his
niece, arrives this evening.

Well I can easily get someone.

No, no the master doesn't like strangers

about the house.

You know him as well as I do.

Miss Elizabeth and I will look after him.

- Very well, but he'll
probably sleep most of the day.

Yes doctor.

Is there any news of Miss Ella?

No, nothing.

You know, I think a line
in your paper might help.

A border, I mean.

If she knew he'd had this attack-

- Oh, no, no the master
doesn't want anything

in the papers.

- Quite frankly my concern
is much more for Miss Ella

than your master.

I owe her a great deal.

She helped me to get this paper started.

And I intend to find her.

A line will help.

We've lost a wheel.

Do you think you could
possibly assist me-

Hello Beth.


Michael Latimer!

How are you?

I'm fine, glad to be back.

What's all this about Aunt Ella?

I'll tell you about it later.

Get in the car and I'll
drive you to the house.

Is that your luggage?


All right cabbie.

Yes, thank you.

- Clara said something
about her disappearing.

It's not like Aunt Ella to play truant.

I know.

There's more in this that meets the eye.

Let me give you a hand.

Your Uncle Walter has been
behaving very strangely

since Ella disappeared.

All right cabbie?

Yes sir.

Thank you.

All right.

You seriously mean to tell me

that an ordinary domestic cat

is terrorizing three grown ups?

She's more than terrorizing them.

She's become a sort of evil symbol.

They hate it.

Well in that case I can't understand

Aunt Ella leaving Tabitha
behind unprotected.

She loves that animal.

- I wonder if it's Tabitha
that needs protecting.

- Oh Miss Elizabeth,
I'm so glad you've come.

Hello Clara.


Not the cat?

Yes sir.

Your gentle Tabitha.

I was sitting with the master.

I had closed my eyes for a moment.

I had no idea it was in the room.

Suddenly jumped on me.

Clawed me and disappeared.

Has Mr. Veneble seen this?

No, he's still asleep.

He gave instructions to be awakened

as soon as Miss Elizabeth arrived.

Her pet?

Miss Elizabeth, you better go up.

All right Clara.

Goodnight, Michael.

Thank you.

May I call on you tomorrow?

Please do.



I'm sorry to see you like this.

You may leave us, Clara.

- Beth, we've had a
terrible time this week.

Ella's disappearance,
that animal running amok.

I'm glad you were able to come.

I'm glad, too.

I hope I can be of some help.

Tell me about Aunt Ella.


you don't know what Ella's
been like this last year.

Keeping to herself,

not speaking to anyone.

Not a civil word from her.

She's done a terrible thing to you, Beth.

She made a new will last week.

She's cut you off.

- Well, I can't cry over
something I never had.

I'll take care of it, Beth.

Promise you'll just stay
here and look after me

and I'll see that you get
what's rightfully yours.

Well, don't worry about it now.

Get some rest.

We can talk about all that in the morning.

Good night, Uncle.

Oh Tabby!

Come Tabby.

Hello, Tabby.

Oh you do remember me, don't you?

Of course you do.

It's a good cat.

What are all these
terrible things I'm hearing

about you?


You frightened it, Clara.

What's wrong in this house?

It's that animal, that's what's wrong.

You saw what it did to Andrew.

A moment ago it was as gentle

as I've always known it to be.

The minute it saw you it spat and hissed.

Like a demon.

Like the evil demon it is.

Well, it will be gone tomorrow.

Some men are coming to take it away.

I really came in to see if
there is anything you wanted.

Nothing, Clara.

Thank you for troubling.

And, good night.

Good night.

What do you mean trap it?

Isn't that what you're
supposed to have been doing?

It's no use,

she outsmarts us all the way.

This morning I trapped her with a gun.

Just as I had a beat on her

she was gone in there in the swamp.

I can't track her there.

She knows that place
better than any human.

So we're trying to poison her either.

She won't touch what I give her.

She just forages out those
birds and mice and things.

She won't touch the food I give her.

Ah, can't say I blame her.

Hello Beth.

Good morning, Michael.

Good morning, inspector.

Good morning Miss Veneble.

Any news?

Nothing I'm afraid.

- They all seem to be
worrying more about the cat

than about poor Aunt Ella.

How is Walter?

He seems better.

You can see him if you like.

Well now I've made other arrangements.

I've sent for my brother
Edgar and his son, Jacob.

That's how desperate I am.

Well they'll catch it!

They're clever!

They'll catch it and kill it.

You hear me, kill it!

May we come in?

Oh what is it now?

How are you today, Walter?


Where is Ella?

Why don't you find her?

A lady doesn't just
disappear without any trace.

Walter, we're convinced that Ella met

with foul play.

We think she's dead.

You're talking a lot of rubbish.

Who would want to kill Ella?

What good would it do anyone?

She hadn't any enemies.

Nobody stands to profit
from her death except me.

Clara, get the box.

She left everything she got to me.

Every penny.

Don't let me hear anymore
nonsense about foul play.

The person who killed Clara

may not necessarily have
known her, you know?

Plenty of people on the loose

who kill for the sake of killing.

Some tramp in the woods, perhaps.

No, no tramp in his right mind

would go into those woods.

Enough of those swamps.

Ah here it is.

Read it for yourself.

She drew it up just
before she disappeared.

- Still doesn't solve the
mystery of Ella's disappearance.

What do you propose to do now?

Dig up the whole
countryside looking for her?

If necessary.

There it is.


The cat, out there!

It was there, I tell you.

Uncle Walter, Tabitha's just a pet.

What possible harm can she do you?

What harm?

Look at Andrew.

Horrible thing crawling about the house.

I lock all the doors and all the windows

but still it somehow manages to get in.

One night I woke up,

it was lying across my chest.

Trying to catch my breath.

Trying to kill me.

Now Uncle Walter, that's enough.

You'll work yourself
up into another attack.

I tell you it was trying to kill me,

I know, I know.

I just don't understand.

Everybody used to love that animal.

Just the same as Ella.


- Maybe that's why she
said I was her favorite.

- You weren't mentioned
in her will, were you?

That's why I brought her here.

Mean of Ella.

Cut her off like that.

Well I'll take care of you, Beth.

I suppose there's not any
more for us to discuss, Rose?

If she is dead,

then we ought to know soon.

Make the suffering easier.

Poor Ella.

Poor Ella.

Can you see it?

- Nothing there.
- You're lying.

I tell you I saw nothing.

But we all heard it.

You can't deny that, we all heard it.

It's evil I tell you.


I'll look in on you tomorrow, Walter.

When Edgar and Jacob get here

we'll catch it.

We'll catch it and destroy it.

- Don't bank it til you've
got the money in your pocket.

Walter's a shrewd old bird.

He doesn't dangle a large inheritance

in front of three loathe relatives

without wanting the
deuce of a lot in return.

I don't trust him.

On account of forgiveness

for that stock manipulation of ours.

We lost a lot of Aunt Ella's money.

At least she was compensated

in knowing that you spent
two years behind bars

to contemplate your sins.

Well thank you.

He's got Beth with him, you know.

That will be jolly.

You'll be nice to her, Louise.

Beth was Ella's favorite.

A big fat piece of the estate goes to her.

Aunt Ella has only disappeared,

however nobody says she's dead.

All we can do is hope.

And pray.

They're here.

Let them in, get them settled.

Then show them up here.


You can go meet them.

I don't like it.

I don't like him having a day here.

With him here, where do we stand?

We get what's agreed to.

It's all written down.

And what about Miss Elizabeth?

We're getting in very deep, Andrew.

It's too late now.

We've got to see it through.

The sooner it's clone,

the sooner we get away from here.

Indeed, I hope so, I hope so.

You know, this place is
getting on my nerves.

Go on, open the door.

Ah Clara, how's old Clara?

- Not too much of the
old, if you don't mind.

- Oh Andrew, pick up
the bags if you please.

Home sweet home.

Well how is he today?

I'm afraid he's a little poor.

Oh dear.

There's my dear, nice to see you.

You remember Beth, don't you Jacob?

And this is Louise, Jacob's wife.

Quite the little Veneble reunion.

This calls for a drink.

Uncle Walter's waiting to see you.

Well I'll be up in a minute.

In a minute.

I'll go up.

Is he really bad?

- He'll be all right as long
as he gets plenty of rest.

But so much has been happening lately.

Yes, what price the old girl lay.

Never thought she'd do a bunt like that.

Or did she?

If you're referring to Aunt Ella,

nobody knows where she is
or what's happened to her.

Well here goes.

He's still in the same room, I suppose?

The one that smells of mothballs?


There's no need to be coy with Beth.

I'm sure she's aware that
you've been a guest at Dartmoor.

- Strange, always imagines
me chasing after the women.

Fancy, and have you changed?

Uncle Walter!

Oh I startled you, I'm so sorry.

Oh but how well you're looking.

How could anyone looking as you do

be bedridden?

Did you just hear a cat?

A cat?

Here in this room?


Would you like me to find him for you?

No, no, no.

Go and get Edgar and Jacob immediately.

They're just coming.

You haven't said hello
to me yet Uncle Walter.

Hello, now go and get Edgar then Jacob.

No, no, no.

Leave the door.

- Well the whole place
hasn't altered much, has it?

Big grim Bradsford.

Get in the back room and step, hey Edgar?

It's all right.

- Dinner won't be long
if you're going to see

Uncle Walter.

Hi, on my way up.

Stuck up.

Ah, Jacob!

Be nice to her.

We must all be nice to Beth.

Aunt Clara.

For heavens sake.

Oh God, that cat's a total monster.

I nearly got it.

To me help me sir, I gotta find it.

You gotta help me,

you gotta help me to find it!

Clara, pull yourself together.

You don't seem to realize
you nearly killed me.

Have to find it,

I gotta find it!

Listen to me.

Listen to me!

What is this stupid obsession

over an ordinary little cat?

What is it all about?

- Was sitting there on
that hearth looking at me,

making that dreadful noise.

Staring at me.

Staring at me with its trouble eyes.

It was horrible all through the house!

Afraid of a cat?

You of all people.

Have you quite finished?

Sorry Walter.

Now listen to me, the three of you.

And don't stand out in the corridor.

Come closer, I haven't got smallpox.

Close the door, Jacob.

Let's put our cards on the table.

I promised you money and
that's why you're here.

I don't love you

and you hate the sight of me.

Oh really?

Shut up.

Now that I've got that off my chest,

I can pretend that you're human beings.

Now listen to me carefully.

A couple of years ago Ella made a will.

That's the problem.

So, you've gotta find that will

and kill that animal.

Is that quite clear?

Yes, very clear sir.

I think you can rely on father and me.

And Louise.

She's had as much experience
with cats as anybody.

I've drawn up a document

witnessed by Andrew and Clara.

Guarantees you what we've agreed.

Provided you do as I've said.

That's understood.

Here it is.

You can trust me.

And now I'm trusting you.

I'm hoping.

And Beth?

We'll deal with Beth all in good time.

Or at least you will.

All right, Michael.

Meet me in the coach
house in about 10 minutes.

Thank you.




Are you going to be friends with me?

There's a good girl.

Hello Tabby.

I knew I was right.

Come and make friends with Uncle Walter.

Oh Michael,

I'm so glad you're here.

Tell me about it.

There isn't much to tell except...

Go on.

It's the house.

It's like living with
some horrible evil spirit.

They're all frightened of something.

Not just the cat.

It goes beyond that.

I'm frightened of them, Michael.

Let me take you away from here.


No, I couldn't desert Uncle Walter.

Not with those greedy relatives of his

flustering around like vultures.

- I'm more concerned with
those two bloody servants.

How is Tabitha behaving?

- Clara seems more frightened
of her than anyone.

Tonight she even swung a knife at her.

She makes Andrew lay down poison meat.

Tabitha outwits them every time.

You must think I'm a
silly hysterical female

imagining things.

No, I don't.

You see that cat knows
why Miss Ella disappeared.

What are you saying?

- Why do you think
they're frightened of it?

Clara said something about the cat

looking at her with accusing eyes.

Someone thinks a cat is looking at them

with accusing eyes.

They're only seeing a reflection
of their own conscience.

- You think Clara knows
where to find Aunt Ella?

I don't know what Clara knows.

But I know this.

As long as that cat remains alive

the sooner its very presence

will cause someone's mind to disintegrate

and their tongue to loosen.

Then we'll know what became of Miss Ella.

That's what they're afraid of.

Why do you suppose Edgar
and Jacob are here?

I don't really know.

To help kill the cat.

But Uncle Walter sent for them.


No, no!


That's why I want you to come away.

Oh you must be out of your mind

if you're imagining that Uncle Walter

had anything to do with
Aunt Ella's disappearance.

It's too horrible.


No Michael, don't.

Ah, a bit of luck.

We found this old cage in the cellar.

Now, we put this in the fall court

and put something tasty inside.

And here we are.

Prop up the lid.


Oh there you are, Beth.

Do come in.

What's the matter with her?

Oh I think she likes cats.

Now we hide in the bushes

and wait.

In goes the cat.

You don't know that cat.

Cat doesn't know me?

No, he's a past master at setting traps.


And the rest is up to you, Edgar.

Well, anything happening out there?

Not yet.

They've been at it all morning.

Come on!

They've caught it, they've caught it!

Kill it, kill it!

Tell them to kill it!

Kill it!


Tell him, Andrew.

I'm taking into those forest

and I'm dropping it in the drop!

Good bye pussy cat!

And he said we'd give you some action,

didn't I Walter?

Well done, Jacob.

We'll have to full marks, my boy.

I think it's shameful.

The way you're carrying on about killing

this poor animal.

Really Beth?

You of all people should understand

it was having a terrible
psychological effect

on poor Uncle Walter.




Where's that fool Andrew?

That's what I'd like to know.

You don't think...

Think what?

That something could have gone wrong?

The devil could have gone wrong?

You saw the cat tied up in the bag.

You saw him take...


Cats have nine lives, you know father.

I don't want to spread
alarm and despondence

but Andrew's been missing
for four hours now.

The kitchen!

Let me come back!

Where is dear Andrew?

I'll break his full neck.

Well it must be here somewhere?

We'll have to search the whole house.

Don't all just stand there!

Some more prints.

Louise, go with Clara.

This way.

Where's that...

What is it?

Your friend, the cat.

It's come back.

Have you seen it?

You're behaving very badly.

Like frightened school children.

If Tabitha's back I'm glad.

To me she's just a harmless domestic pet.

Why do you want to destroy her?

Get out of my way.

There's a sick man upstairs

and I'm trying to look after him.

I'll go on doing that until-

Until nothing.

That cat's got to be destroyed.

Whether you like it or not.


The cat is back!

The cat?

You're lying.


It's here.

And Andrew?

Still out there.

I'm so frightened.

You know we ought to send for the police.

They ought to be out
there hunting for Andrew.

It's bad enough to be lost in that forest

in the daylight,

but this time of night?

- Andrew knows that
forest better than anyone.

He's afraid to come back.

That's what it is.

A bumbling idiot.

To have that miserable creature

safely in that bag

and then to let it loose.

I'm so afraid, so afraid.

I'm afraid of this cat and house.

I can't stay here!

You can't leave me.

You can't.

But I'm afraid, I'm so afraid.

So am I.

Clara, so am I.

Believe me Clara.

For heavens sake.

Clara, don't leave me!


What is it?

It's Clara, she...

She's dead.

It was the cat.

You heard it didn't you?

It was the cat made her
fall down the stairs

and killed her.

It killed her, it killed her!

Be quiet!

It killed her!

Rose, this is Latimer speaking.

At the Veneble's house.

You better get over here right away.

- Well, have they put out
Clara in cold storage?

First Andrew, then Clara.

Who'll be next?

Edgar, Beth?

OI' you?

How modest of you dear,

to exclude yourself from the list

of prospective victims.

- Not modesty, just a healthy
sense of self preservation.

I'm getting out.

Now look,

I know you had a rough time lately.

I've been preoccupied thinking of ways

to make it up to you.

Oh yes, I'd like to share some
good times with you as well.

But you know how difficult it is

for a man with a prison record

to make a fresh start.

But everything that's happened here is-

Look, now Andrew and Clara are dead.

We can't change that.

But we've come this far.

We may as well go through with it.

As soon as we get our hands
on all that lovely money

we can start making up for lost time.

Promise me, Jacob.

From now on it'll be just us.

No more other women.

Only you Louise.

Only you.

- Inspector Rose arrived
a few minutes ago.

You better find out what he wants.

How is he?

I'm all right?


- Well it looks as if
she lost her balance,

fell over backwards and broke her neck.

But we heard her screaming, "The cat!"

You're trying to tell me the cat

pushed her down the stairs?

I am saying the cat is responsible

for making her fall.


Sorry Walter, but I just can't believe it.

I don't care what you believe.

I'm telling you that that cat
frightened her into falling.

Things have come to a fine pass

when one small animal can terrorize

a house full of bad owls.

Oh, excuse me sir.

We found this laying alongside a log.

And there was footprints, a man's.

We think the man must have crossed the log

to get to the other side of the swamp,

probably slipped and fell in.

- We'll have it dragged
first thing in the morning.

Nothing we can do tonight.

Very good sir.

- You know inspector, I think
that cat's a little angry.


It smells a mouse.

It's upset by the
disappearance of its mistress.

Animals are strange creatures.

Sometimes they seek revenge

when their loved ones are hurt.

I tell you this,

if you find Miss Ella alive

that cat will lie peacefully
by the hearthside.

And these people will
have nothing more to fear.

Are you suggesting that cat pushed

Andrew in the swamp?

What do you think?

- We should start work
early in the morning.

Good night, Walter.

You've gotta find that cat.

I'm not gonna stay in this
room alone til you do.

One of us will take turns in sitting up

with you tonight.

And in the morning we'll
set a new snare for it.

Only this time we'll
kill it there and then.


I'm sorry I was so angry the other night.

Well that's all right.

There's something I should tell you.

Last night, very late, I woke up.

I heard a noise.


It came from overhead.

So, like someone digging.

What have they got up there?

Just storage rooms as far as I know.

Aunt Ella used to use one.

She used to write up there.

She said it was the most
peaceful place in the house.

I'm gonna have a look.

You stay here.

I'd like to come with you.

All right.

Is this it?

I think so.

Watch the floor.

Somebody's been digging
out here, all right.

Something they're anxious to find.

Ella may have hidden.

Michael, I'm frightened.

Don't let's stay here.

We ought to go and get your supper.

Well, what could I do to cheer you up?

Do you play chess?

I see you have a lovely set downstairs.

Where's Beth?

I want her to come sleep in here.

Open the door and call her.

Oh, I was just coming to call you.

You haven't been up there, have you?

Up where?

The attic?

No one's to go up there.

Do you hear me?

No one!

We thought we heard the cat.


There was no sign of it.


Don't go up there again, do you hear me?

Those floors aren't safe.

Might give way at the least pressure.

I'm going to have them seen to.

Good night.

Beth, stay here.

Louise, you show Mr. Latimer out.

You shouldn't have gone up there

without my permission.


Why are you so frightened of the cat?


I'm not frightened, why should I be?

I don't like it, that's all.

Never did.

She might mean more to Ella than I did.

Always hated me.

Ella was able to handle it.

Now she's gone.

It seems free to plague me.

What reason had Clara and Andrew

had to be frightened of it?

How should I know?

Don't keep asking questions.

I'm tired.

I want to get some sleep.

I must get some sleep.

We must find this will soon.

With Clara's death and
Andrew's disappearance.

We shall have to police
swarming all over the place.

Yes, that's what's worrying me.

Give me a match.

It's only a matter of time

before that inspector
fellow realizes who I am.

I have my reputation to think of.

- It's almost as if we
are being watched already.

Not only the cat.

Something human, horrible.

I wonder how far we can trust Walter?

There's nothing to worry about.

We've all in this, so we'll hang together.

Walter knows that.

Yeah, but it occurs to me

that I could be made the whipping boy.

If Walter gets about again, his two feet,

the police get a little more inquisitive.

See what I mean?

Too much depends on Walter for my liking.

You can get some rest now, Beth.

Greg Milling, 14 please.


Yes, someone's up there now.

Oh Michael, come quickly!

Well doctor?

- Well, there's no doubt
about the cause of his death.

He died of a heart attack.

Could it have been fear of somebody?

Or something?

I'm not a policeman, inspector.

Well now you believe us.

That cat got into his
room and killed Walter.

I thought we agreed he was
never to be left alone?

Well he was sleeping soundly

and I thought he'd be all right.

- There have been three
deaths in the last 24 hours

caused entirely by that animal.

- What about the noises
I heard the other night?

What noises?

Miss Veneble thought she had someone

prowling about in the attic.

That's ridiculous.

Walter wouldn't allow anyone up there.

They'd be taking their
life in their hands.

And one of those floors might collapse

at the least pressure.

- Mr. Veneble, Beth and
I already investigated

that part of the house.

Part of a wall up there
has been hacked away.

Someone is trying to find something

in Miss Ella's room.

I can't imagine what.

Oh I'm sure you can.

If you force your imagination a little.

- Inspector, who is the
investigating officer here?

You or Latimer?

I refuse to answer anymore
of his insulting questions.

I'd like to get some sleep.

There's a great deal to
be clone here tomorrow

what with one thing and another.

Not to mention finding Andrew.

And trapping the cat.

What about the estate?

I suppose we divide it equally among

the four remaining relatives?

As a matter of fact, no.


Walter left a will,

witnessed by Andrew and Clara

leaving the house and the estate to me.

And Beth?

There's no mention of her.

Surely he promised Beth.

Read it for yourself.

It so happens I intend to
look after Beth myself.

If there's nothing further, inspector,

I'd like to retire.

Nothing that can't wait til the morning.

And goodnight.


What's the matter?

I know what happened to Uncle Walter.

He went up to his room just before he...

Yes, go on.

His window was open.

He needed fresh air.

- Jacob, I want to leave
this house in the morning.

No, we can't go.

You can stay.

I tell you I'm getting out.

Louise, you'll stay here

as long as father and I stay here.

Let's go to bed.

- Jacob?
- Huh?

- Do you realize our
bedroom is next to his?

How could you?

Uncle Walter?

Don't think of him as a corpse.

He'll join the heavenly choir by now.

Imagine him, Uncle Walter,

sitting on a cloud.

Oh come along darling.

After all Walter showed us the will.

And you saw the signature.

And a very shaky signature it was, too.

Well, Ella was an old lady.

A more vigorous old woman never existed.

That hand didn't tremble with age.

It trembled with fear.

Walter knew that Ella was cutting him off

without a penny.

He'd go to any lengths to stop her.

Somewhere in that room lies the answer

to her disappearance.

Walter knew that.

That's why he brought
Edgar and Jacob here.

Well why?

- And the odds, that's
what they're looking for.


An original will written by Miss Ella

leaving her estate to Elizabeth.

If there is another will

Aunt Ella's solicitors will have a copy.

Who was her solicitor?

Victor Durance.

Well we can soon find out.

Can we telephone from the house?

Yes, before they come back.

Puss, puss, puss, puss, puss.

Come on out.

Old Mrs. Bubbly is up to this morning.

She said bring it on, I'll handle it.

Not this cat, it's a killer.

So is the missus.

- My plan is to sell
the house and leave here

as soon as possible.

But we can't do that
until we find the will.

Then there's Beth.

We have to do something
about her, don't we?

She could be dangerous.

I'll have no part of that.

And another thing,

I'm not spending one more
night in that mausoleum.

And how do we explain your departure?

Oh no Louise.

You were wide eyed with delight

at the prospect of coming here.

Now if you're anxious to have
some of the money to spend

you'd better stay here
and earn your share.

Fish, fish, fish, fish.

Nice sardine?

I see.

No, I'll call you if
there's anything else.

Thank you.

What's the story?

Old Mr. Donz died.

Aunt Ella, with her usual distress,

a pity she hasn't known for 50 years.

Transferred all her papers
to a safe deposit box.

Where that box is now...

- A usual distrust for
someone she hasn't known

for 50 years.

Or her distrust of someone
she has known for 50 years.

I believe Walter was
thinking what I am now.

Those papers are hidden
somewhere in that room upstairs.

I think Ella was murdered in this house

and buried somewhere
nearby in the grounds.

I suppose the cat was the only witness.


That's why they hated it.

That's horrible.

- But the only three people
who could tell us that

are now dead.

It's Andrew, sir.

The inspector would like to have a word

with Mr. Veneble, Beth.

He's in the drawing room.

Michael, I've decided to leave.

Why, why Miss Veneble?

After all that's happened.

- You aren't worried
about the cat, are you?

Wouldn't hurt you surely.

It likes you, you said so yourself.

It wouldn't hurt me, inspector.

Strange, but last time I was here

both Clara and Andrew
seemed very fond of Tabitha.

Even Uncle Walter was kind to her.

Even Walter?

Yes, even Walter.

I don't think he actually disliked her

but then dear Aunt Ella disappeared

and then everything changed.

And now you.

All of you hate the cat.

You're all unnaturally frightened of it.


Because you honestly
believe she caused the death

of three people?

Or does her presence
disturb your conscience?

I'm not going to listen to this dribble.

- Miss Veneble hasn't
finished speaking yet.

- It's not dribble, Uncle
Edgar, and you know it.

I believe all three of you
are terrified of the cat

because you know what's
happened to Aunt Ella.

How could we possibly know?

We weren't even here when-

When Ella was murdered?


Murdered, abducted, whatever it was.

The cat was there and saw what happened.

- Inspector, this man is
practically accusing me

of my family complicity and-


How dare you!

That's enough!

- Michael, I suggest you
withdraw that remark.

Not likely.

This is now my house, inspector.

Your house?

You're very confident, Mr. Veneble.

Does that mean you've already found

Miss Ella's original
will and destroyed it?

- Inspector, if you have no
further official business

I demand that you leave

and take this gentleman with you.

I came here to ask about the will.

If it does exist it must be found.

I should like your permission
to search the house.

Certainly not.

I could apply for a warrant you know.

Very well, get your warrant.

In the meantime...

Michael, you'd better come with me.

Did you see it?

The cat?

He went upstairs.

I should think you're wasting your time

trying to find it.

Rose, look.

Don't be a fool!


Stark, raving mad.


Call the doctor.

Michael, look, Ella's room.

Come on.

Hurry please!

Get some blankets up there.

Quick as you can.

Go upstairs.


Hello puss.

There's a nice girl.

Come to welcome us, have you?

Talking to yourself?

I was talking to that cat, wasn't I?

Well what's the difference?

Oh I can see you don't know about cats.

We just found this, sir.

It was opened.

- The last will and
testament of Ella Veneble.

The original will.

She left everything to you.



It knows.


We found her.


Take me away Michael.

I never want to see this house again.

- Now mind how
you go, grandfather.

Stop fussing, woman!

Don't push, Horace.

Now help me out clear.

Careful dear.

Oh they're going abroad.

- Aren't leaving the
country with us, father.

Guaranteed to kill you off
with boredom in six months.

Hello puss.

Then I suppose they'll move back to town

on my money.


Here puss.

Here puss, here puss.

Oh mommy, what a sweet cat.

Isn't she lovely?

She certainly is a beauty.

Yes, they say it's good luck

when a cat welcomes you to a new house.

We can certainly use a bit of good luck.

Well we've still got grandfather.

If only he'd change his will.

- Well I've always said
he could be worked on.