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CATS DON'T DANCE

SYNOPSIS:
Danny is a cool cat from Kokomo, Indiana, who wants to make it big in Hollywood as a singing and dancing star. While it is relatively easy to get a role in a movie, Danny discovers the roles are for cats and dogs, not singing cats and dogs. The animal agency is filled with wannabes, but Danny is more determined than the others. They get bit parts in Darla Dimple’s pictures, Darla being the superficially cute little girl with a heart of stone who feels threatened when cats start singing and tap dancing on HER show. Darla sabotages one performance, meant to be an audition for the legendary studio boss, L.B.Mammoth. But Danny overcomes these setbacks, and even lures Sawyer, the once-bitten-by-the-system female cat who sings and dances a storm, to join him. And they put on a show that stops Hollywood.

"Cute idea and is sure to entertain kids during the holidays, but lacks the wit and snappy script to charm a wider audience. It’s a colourful production with a bunch of characters with enough novelty value to amuse. Danny, the "song and dance cat" is a bundle of energy and optimistic enthusiasm; Sawyer, the all-blonde and all-cat puss with the extravagantly fluffy tail that sweeps seductively around her paws; a tap-dancing penguin with a cherub face; the piano-playing/song-writing elephant who dons false tusks and trumpets to herald the beginning of films - in a variation on the MGM lion; I am rather taken by the purple fish with false eyelashes who lolls around in a bucket drinking cocktails. There are great orchestrations and arrangements of the Randy Newman songs but I couldn’t help but feel that it would be good to hear a repeated theme or song, so that we could be humming it as we leave the cinema. The songs with the most impact are those sung by Natalie Cole in the persona of Sawyer, the cat with sex appeal. There is a lovely touch towards the end, when we see film posters with our animal friends portrayed in the starring roles. Batman & Robin, Ninja Turtles, Gone With The Wind & Casablanca never quite looked like this. Nice try but no meouw."
Louise Keller

"The jazz score is outstanding, the voice work is excellent, some of the action and showstopper sequences are terrific and energetic, the animated dancing marvellous, notably the choreographic advice of the late Gene Kelly - and all these elements entertain a wide audience. But the script and the characterisations are toddler level, making this a difficult film, almost at cross purposes with itself. Adult music and ideas here and there, such as Sawyer, the alluring and talented cat with Natalie Cole’s singing voice, clash with the childishness of the material. This is Turner Pictures’ first attempt at large scale mainstream animation, muscling in on Disney’s turf. I think it’s back to the drawing board."
Andrew L. Urban

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AUSTRALIAN VIDEO RELEASE: September 9, 1998

AUST VIDEO DISTRIBUTOR: Columbia TriStar

R.R.P: $24.95

CATS DON’T DANCE (G)
(US)

VOICES: Scott Bakula, Jasmine Guy, Natalie Cole, Ashley Peldon, Lindsay Rideway, Kathy Nijimy, John Rhys-Davies, George Kennedy, Rene Auberjonois, Hal Holbrook

DIRECTOR: Mark Dindal

PRODUCER: David Kirschner

SCRIPT: Roberts Gannaway, Cliff Ruby, Elana Lesser, Theresa Pettengill, story by Rich Schneider, Robert Lence, Mark Dindal, Brian McEntee, David Womersley, Kelvin Yasuda

MUSIC: Steve Goldstein, songs Randy Newman

CHOREOGRAPHY: Gene Kelly

ART DIRECTION: Brian McEntee

PRODUCTION DESIGN:

RUNNING TIME: 75 minutes







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