Purr-fectly "Horror"-fying: Review for "Masters of Horror: The Black Cat"

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The Black Cat is one of the episodes in the Showtime series Masters of Horror. It appears in season 2. The film is beautifully crafted by Stuart Gordon, director of the classic Re-Animator. The film does not feature any gratuatisque scenes, like most of the other episodes in the series. It does feature blood, but with good reason to the storyline: Virginia Poe is suffering from TB. The film is based on Edgar Allan Poe’s tale of self destruction. It is about a man who is mentally tormented by this black cat, and in result, does unspeakable acts. The film plays out fantastically, pretending that Poe, very poor and depressed because of his wife’s disease, is slowly descending into madness. The accounts in the film are either something that happened in Poe’s life or taken directly from the short story. The thing I liked about it is that the film didn’t feature unneeded amount of blood or nudity, that all the elements were important to the story and not just thrown it for fun. Gordon did a great job with Re-Animator, so it was interesting to see a splatter director take on a piece of classic Gothic literature, much like he did in the first season of Masters with H.P. Lovecraft’s Dreams of the Witch House, which (no pun intended) was almost as well done as this one. The picture is almost black and white for the time setting except for scenes in which you see blood or anything truly colorful. This is the best one of the series. Poe is the Master of Gothic Horror, while Gordon remains the Master of Cinematic Horror. Grade: A- Stars: 4.5/5 Stars 8.5/10

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