Mini Monsters: Cat’s Eye (1985)

There were two reasons I checked out Stephen King’s anthology horror flick Cat’s Eye. First off, this horror magazine I read called HorrorHound wrote about it in their latest issue which was anthology themed. A quick note on HH before moving on. I love this mag, but the lack of editing drives me CRAZY. As an editor myself and a big fan of upstart magazines (that’s definitely not an easy mountain to climb right now), I want the writing to be as crisp and consistent as possible to it won’t turn off people like me who are driven crazy by such things. As an example, depending on what kind of style guide you use, you either italicize a movie title or put it in quotes. Sometimes they italicize, sometimes they do quotes and sometimes they do both! I don’t know if this bothers you normal folks, but it bugs me. I guess it’s not all that bad because I’m still reading it, but I’d love to create a style guide for them.

The other reason I checked Cat’s Eye out is because Rickey thought that it might be the mini monster movie I remember from my childhood, but still haven’t been able to track down. And that lack of success has continued with Cat’s Eye even though it does have a gremlin monster of some kind and the bouncing ball. But, I had a blast watching it so who cares?

So did my cat Milo. Before getting into the movie review, here’s a few pics I took of him watching the cat (the connector of the three stories) run away from a dog. He loves watching animals on TV.

So, the three stories are like this. First, James Woods joins this crazy-strict mob-run program that helps you quit smoking on the threat of harm to your loved ones. It’s over the top and has great moments of dark humor and I didn’t see the end coming. The second story focuses on a rich guy torturing the guy who plans to run away with the rich guy’s wife by making him walk around the outside of a skyscraper. And the final, my personal favorite, brings the cat into the hero role as he defends a little girl (Drew Barrymore) from a mini monster, even though her mom swears the cat is causing all the problems.

What I like best about the final segment is the practical effects they used to convey the mini monster running around Barrymore’s bedroom. I didn’t see any behind-the-scenes stuff, but it looks like the dressed a regular dude up in the costume and then put him in a room where everything was built huge to make him look tiny. Just think about how much fun that would be? I would love to do something like that. The whole idea made me smile every time they showed those scenes. Here’s a video of the scene. If you’re worried about spoilers you might want to skip it, but if you think anyone, even Stephen King would kill Drew Barrymore, you’re nuts. Just saying.

Aside from the FX, though, all three stories are really solid and fun while still feeling scary. They play out like EC horror stories, which I love in all their non-comic forms (the few I’ve read, read really slow to me, but the art is awesome). So, I may not have found my mini monster, but I checked another movie off in my copy of Creature Features book

In Search of a Mini Monster With a Ball

Okay, so as many of you know, I’m a big fan of horror movies. For the most part horror flicks remained a terrifying mystery that I didn’t want anything to do with until I turned 14 and could ride my bike up to the nearby Family Video where you could get six tapes for $3 and the clerks were pretty lax when it came to checking IDs.

But, I actually saw my first horror movie years earlier. Well, the REAL first horror movie I saw was on accident when my parents were out of town and the babysitter had some friends over to watch Evil Dead. I happened to come downstairs during the infamous tree rape scene. Actually, that night is probably why I wanted nothing to do with horror movies. I was scarred.

But, back to the whole point of this post. The first full horror movie I remember seeing involved some kind of tiny monster and a ball bouncing down the steps. I always assumed it was Troll or Troll 2, but I just checked both flicks out last week and I was surprised to find that I had no recollection of either flick. It’s obviously not either of the Gremlins movies and I thought it wasn’t Leprechaun, which I’ve seen in the past few years and didn’t seem to remember either.

So, I’m at a loss. I’ve got the first two Ghoulies movies from Netflix and have gone through the first one. No luck again. Maybe it’s Critters? Rickey suggested a Stephen King anthology flick called Cat’s Eye that’s luckily on Netflix Instant. Anyone else got any suggestions? I know the description is hardly helpful, but maybe someone else has a suggestion I can check out. I’m having a great time going through these mini monster movies.