Animation | 1920 | Silent | B/W
Felix the cat. A tale of how entertaining your kids can land you in serious trouble with the misses! 1920's
In a room, with bare walls and a bed, Felix looks at a watch that is hidden in his fur and beckons to a kitten off camera, who looks reluctant when they appear, Felix puts their nightwear on them, picks them up, puts them in bed and watches them slide along; he beckons to another, and repeats the process and then again, so that there are three kittens in the bed; he wags his finger at them and leaves the room.
A white cat, sits in an armchair, reading a book, by a fireplace where there is a clock and candlestick on the mantelpiece, plus a picture of a cow over the hearth; Felix comes in and she looks up as he puts a hand on the side of his head, closes his eyes and points to the room, indicating they are asleep; he sits down and she returns to her book whilst he shrugs; suddenly the word WOW floats into the room as if like bats, Felix sits up, the word changes to a ? and his wife listens. The three kittens are sitting up with their mouths open wide and shaking in unison. Pointing to Felix, his wife looks annoyed. 'It's too early for bed. Take them to the movies!' Pointing to herself and then him, Felix grows wide eyed, moves them from Sid to side, nods and leaves the room, allowing his wife to carry on reading.
Lines from above their mouths symbolise tears as Felix enters the kittens bedroom, he puts up his hand and as they stop he smiles and beckons to them; their heads have turned and one by one, they slide out of bed, their clothing comes off and slinks under the bed and they walk out of the room.
'Off to the Cinema'. Felix and the kittens walk in a line, past houses with high roofs, trees with few leaves and past a barrel. The kiosk, some distance from the town, has a stern usher in his uniform in, and a poster advertising a film on by its side, as Felix and the kittens approach; Felix gets a coin from inside his fur, tosses it towards the usher, only for him to bend down, squashing his face and waving them away. 'No cats admitted here!' Felix looks angry as two of the kittens begin to cry, but the usher is unrepentant.
As they walk past houses, crying, Felix grits his teeth, stops and the kittens cease crying, but their eyes are still sad as he shakes his head; they all begin to walk back and forth, Felix finally has dotted lines appear from his eyes, he winks at the kittens who look expectant and they begin to follow him.
By a clothes shop there is a dressed dummy, which he pulls over, putting the trousers on; one kitten puts on the jacket and jumps on top of him, another gets inside the head and jumps up, whilst the last, curls up on the head, making a hat, as they walk off.
At the kiosk, the hat is lifted, money got from a trouser pocket, flipped, and pushed into the usher, who gives the man the ticket, unaware it is the cats; although they wobble slightly they manage to pull it off. By the turnstile, stands a larger usher, with his nose sticking out over his coat, the cats raise their hat and hand over the ticket, but the tail of the cat on top falls down and the usher investigates by pulling it; the kitten unravels with shock lines coming from its head and the usher's; the head rolls off and reveals the feet of the cat inside, the usher squats down, grows angrier and moves up and down, fists clenched as a head pops out of the jacket, causing his hat to jump up, turn into a ? and then reappear with a ? above it, as Felix's head appears and they all run away, the usher kicks one foot in the air and his shoe comes off goes round to his bottom and kicks him, so that he jumps round and dotted lines come from his eyes, whilst there are flashes from his bottom. The cats stay close to the ground, as they run behind the ticket office.
By the side of the cinema, Felix and the kittens look despondent, but Felix growls with anger, his eyes narrow and he crouches down, turns round, sees the door and the pipe and dotted lines appear from his eyes; he points to the door. 'They can't keep us outa there!' His tails grows longer and pulls the pipe down, he tugs at it till it breaks and they all crawl inside the pipe and enter the cinema.
Inside, the ceiling has three chandeliers, through the middle one come the cats, one in each of the four balls; Felix comes down first and the glass breaks, the other three are lowered and he twists them off, breaks them and the kittens come out as puddles, becoming whole as they run into the cinema screen, he follows. In one of the circles Felix raises his eyes and looks to see if the coast is clear, signalling to the others when it is and their eyes come over and then the tops of their bodies; they wink and turn to the screen. The cinema is packed and as the curtain rises the lights go down; the screen says Felix on and changes to an image of him walking and waving to the audience; the three kittens do a double take in the dark and on screen, Felix takes his tail off and it becomes a walking stick, the kittens point. They bob up and down excitedly, laugh, jump up on the edge of the balcony and point. 'Look there's Daddy!' They laugh and hold their stomachs. A bear appear on screen and slinks towards Felix who has not noticed it, eventually he does and they jump at one another, but the bear manages to jump over him, turn round and catch him before he has a chance to react; his tail is caught and the caption 'Help' obscures most of the screen, when it disappears, Felix is yelping. The kittens, shake and have round mouths, they get angry and pounce at the screen, with Felix following; they rip in down and it becomes a ball going round and round. The audience throw it about and then throws it out of the room, shaking their fists to show their disapproval.
Stars and flashes of smoke come from the cinema door as the cloth with the cats in is thrown out by two men who are sit down as it runs off. 'It looks like no movies today!'
On a patch of grass, the three kittens cry, their mouths open wide as Felix looks on, shaking his head, as he pulls one of the kitten's tails, it extends and the three tails join together and a wheel appears, which when he turns it, reduces the tears until they stop and the tails return to normal; Felix thinks, scratching his head. 'Never mind! We'll make our own movies!!' Felix smugly closes his eyes and points to himself, pulling a movie camera on a tripod from his fur, as the kittens look on; a ? appears and he turns and begins to film.
On a hill is a woman in a dress who begins to dance, bending backwards, twirling and kicking her leg in the air. Felix films her, turns to the audience and puts a thumb up, moves the camera to another image and film that. It is a row of soldiers marching, with guns and furry, round hats on, like those worn by soldiers outside Buckingham Palace. Felix looks for something else to film. A man is in a hot air balloon, which is held down by two men holding ropes, as he waves goodbye, but they let go and he flies off. Felix moves the camera as the balloon goes up, squints and then turns the camera again. By a lake, is a female cat, in a swimming costume on a diving board, she waves, dives into the water, making a splash and then dives out and jumps back onto the board. Felix has hearts appear over his head and he points to himself and walks away leaving the children alone. As the female cat stands eyes closed and provocatively on the board, Felix takes his ears off and bows. The three kittens jump up and down. 'Lets take pictures of Daddy!' Standing on top of one another, they begin to film the scene. Felix tickles the female under the chin and she wags her finger at him. The kittens are getting all this, but jump down as Felix returns and as he wheels the camera home with the three kittens on it, he has no idea they caught him on camera.
'The first showing'. Seated are his wife and the kittens as he loads the film into the projector, winks and turns the lights off as the film begins. 'The Spring Dance'. The dancer's legs grow larger as she moves closer to the camera, but shrinks as she recedes. The Parade. The film is upside down. The Balloon Ascension. Again the picture is upside down. It seem the basket is at the top rather than the bottom. Felix's wife's eyes narrow and she turns to him wanting him to turn it off. He looks wide mouthed and two ? Appear over his head, his eyes narrow and he has an idea. The Bathing Beauty, appears upside down, but finally appears the right way up. The female cat dives into the water and climbs out. Felix is on the board and kisses her hand as dots appear from her eyes to his, he jumps up and hearts appear over them both as they kiss, he turns round, the kiss again. His wife is furious and Felix shakes his head as she points to him and punches the camera, causing stars to appear. A silhouette of two cats fighting. Clouds. A cat is pulled over another. Stars. Felix with plasters over him, a black eye, his tail and arm in a sling, his eyes moving round and round and he puts his hand out to the camera, shaking his head. No more film making for Felix!
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