Consider yourself a cat lover? If you clicked on this article, the answer to that question is either “YES, DUH!” or, at very least, “Yeah, sure.” If you like to think of yourself as a friend of felines (or even just a person who enjoys watching their adorable antics from the safety of the other side of a screen), then congratulations, because you have arrived at page worthy of your scrolling and attention (and, quite possibly, a bookmark for later reference).
Watching an endless loop of hilarious cat videos on YouTube? Good times. Sharing memes and GIFs and other funny images of internet famous felines? Practically an internet person rite of passage. Petting a cute, soft kitten in the real world? Amazing (and relaxing and anxiety- and stress-busting and just all-around great for your mental health). But, if you want to take your cat love offline but not quite IRL, the best compromise is probably a cat-themed movie night. Thankfully, cats have been sneaking their way into mass media (/our hearts) since well before the internet. Below, enjoy a list of some of the best cat movies (which encompasses movies about cats, starring cats, and generally pleasing to cat lovers in general) ever made—in no purr-ticular order. Sorry, I had to.
Key, Peele, and an adorable kitten? There’s literally nothing not to be into about this.
A Disney animated movie about cats with a pun-tastic title? Purr-fection.
Oliver & Company
Back in the day, someone walked into a Disney exec’s office and said, “Hey, I’ve been thinking…our next project should definitely be a retelling of Oliver Twist with talking, mostly homeless animals.” And then someone else took a meaningful pause before replying, “BRILLIANT” and writing a check. Or, you know, something vaguely like that, at least.
The Lion King
A few years after that Oliver & Company meeting, someone walked into a Disney exec’s office and said, “Remember how our animated animal version of Oliver Twist went gangbusters? Let’s do it again, but raise the stakes: Instead of alley cats, we do lions. Instead of Dickens, we go all in and do Shakespeare.” And then The Lion King made $768 million dollars and that person got a big promotion. Or, again, something vaguely like that.
For those nights when what you really want to watch is a musical fever dream with CGI cat-human hybrid monsters that will star in your nightmares for weeks. Or if you just really love Taylor Swift and/or Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Depending on who you ask, Jones the Cat from Alien is either an allegory for god or the true villain of the movie, but there’s no denying that the Nostromo’s second survivor is one of the most important movie cats of all time.
A Street Cat Named Bob
This cat classic is actually based on a true story, initially written in a memoir of the same name by James Bowen about his experiences struggling with homelessness and heroin addiction—and the street cat named Bob who ultimately helped him on his journey to get clean and turn his life around.
Legend of the Demon Cat
This Xianxia fantasy/mystery movie is just as amazing as its title implies. And yes, it really is about a literal demon cat—that’s not just a metaphor.
Puss in Boots
Antonio Banderas was born to play Puss in Boots. He was also born to do a lot of other things, of course, but making this cat-sterpiece is definitely on the list.
You know how every cat you ever meet looks like they’re thinking really snarky stuff about every move you make and somehow knows more about existing in the world than you, an adult human, does? The cat in Coraline epitomizes that feeling.
Sometimes, watching fictional cats just doesn’t scratch the itch and you need to watch some real cats. When that feeling strikes on movie night, load Disney+ and watch the stunningly gorgeous documentary African Cats.
That Darn Cat!
You can tell the original That Darn Cat! is a Disney classic because it stars Hayley Mills. It’s also a genuinely fun, crime/mystery comedy, if you care about the plot in addition to the presence of a purring costar.
For when you’re like “cat movie…but also make it Halle Berry levels of sexy, please.”
There’s a cat at the center of this 2018 South Korean psychological thriller, which begins with a young woman running into her childhood friend and asking him to watch her cat while she takes a trip to Africa.
My Neighbor Totoro
Why? Because the Catbus is iconic, that’s why.
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Orangey the cat (seriously, that’s the cat actor’s name and he has his own Wikipedia page, which boasts about how he made history as the only cat to win two of the animal actors’ equivalent of an Oscar) steals the movie and dominates the ending. Cat movie.
A Whisker Away
This gorgeous, Japanese animated film tells the story of a young, socially awkward girl who buys a magical mask that lets her become a cat, and finds it easier to connect with the people she can’t get along with in real life when she’s in feline form.
Cats can even change the world when that world is full of superheroes and secret agents. Case-in-point: Captain Marvel, in which the cat, Goose, is revealed to play a very important world in shaping part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe mythology.
AKA the movie with the animatronic cat that you had a low-key, weird crush on in elementary school. …Just me?
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