Feeling Grumpy? These 7 Fabulous Felines Will Enchant Your Screen!

May 26, 2020

Do you love cats?

Yeah, that’s what we thought! We maintain there is nothing quite like a cat for elevating you out of a bad mood, so if you’ve been feeling a bit grumpus lately (as we both have!), this list of our favorite, most magical and cozy cat stories from the big and small screens is 100% for you. Whether you’re in the mood for classic cinema, slice-of-life anime, or pure whimsy, these shows will warm your heart and bring the catitude!

We also CANNOT WAIT for our Profs & Pints talk this Friday night on cats in folklore and fairy tales, so this is meant to help tide us (and you?) over too!

The Studio Ghibli Cats [Whisper of the Heart / The Cat Returns / Kiki’s Delivery Service] – Okay, we admit we’re cheating right off the bat, because HOW could you just pick ONE Studio Ghibli cat to highlight out of all the truly wonderful cats in their films? It is impossible. We did narrow it down to three movies to focus on though (and Whisper of the Heart / The Cat Returns are basically two parts of the same story so it’s really like TWO movies, right? … Right? Yes.) First, of course, there is the dashing Baron, of both Whisper of the Heart and The Cat Returns (though in the first he is only a statue/a story!) 

But while Baron is svelte and debonair, we also have a huge soft spot for the saucy, does-what-he-wants chonk Moon!

The silent, judgey stares are so perfectly cat-like we can’t stand it. 

Not to mention all the other cats in the Cat Kingdom of The Cat Returns

Then, last but certainly not least, there is Kiki’s beloved familiar Jiji, a cat who packs so much personality into his little fuzzy body that he totally deserves a movie of his own.

Sabrina the Teenage Witch – You have to admit it: there’s no cat in the world quite like Salem Saberhagen. A powerful warlock sentenced to 100 years as a cat for trying to take over the world, Salem was often the funniest thing about Sabrina the Teenage Witch

Part of the humor was that Salem was definitely still his (slightly) evil (human) self in cat-form… but he was also 100% cat.

P.S. Don’t miss Salem in the Netflix reboot The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina! He’s much more realistic in design than Classic Salem but still delightful. And the story of how Sabrina got her familiar is not to be missed!

My Roommate is a Cat – One of the more obscure picks on this list, My Roommate is a Cat is a show about a grumpy, antisocial novelist (who writes mystery thrillers!) who slowly learns how to connect with the world around him when he adopts a kitten. 

This show will charm the pants off you and hit you in the feels. But it’s also a really compassionate and surprisingly realistic look at how caring for a cat can transform, or even save, your life. Bonus: in each episode, Subaru (the writer) tells the story from his perspective, and then Haru (the kitten!) gets to tell it her way!

Breakfast at Tiffany’s – Audrey Hepburn was a queen, and there’s no way this list would be complete with Cat of Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Full disclosure: this is one of our all-time favorite films, but there are definitely parts of it that haven’t aged well. Cat, however, has aged spectacularly. Exhibit A:

What would Holly’s bizarre, empty apartment be like without Cat? (Answer: way less charming.) Cat humanizes Holly, even when she’s trying to pretend to be all surface and carefree. And we salute Cat’s ability to roll with Holly’s epic parties. 

Also, that iconic kiss in the rain? Would not have happened without Cat. Partially because Holly finally realizes loving others is worth it when she (temporarily) loses Cat, partially because we would have thrown the TV out of the window if she hadn’t found him.

Alice in Wonderland – Now, we certainly can’t have a list of great cats on screen without including the infamous Cheshire Cat in all his many guises in various films! 

“Well! I’ve often seen a cat without a grin,” thought Alice; “but a grin without a cat! It’s the most curious thing I ever saw in all my life!”

That smile is everything. 

But, that said, we’d also like to give a shout-out to dear, sweet, sassy Dinah. 

We totally think she would have ruled Wonderland by the end if she had been there (remember, when Alice describes her hunting skills in the book, all the animals are afraid of her!) We’re so sad she gets left behind!

The Secret of Kells – If you haven’t seen this movie yet, we highly, highly recommend you check it out. It tells the origins of the Book of Kells, a stunning illuminated manuscript from the 9th century that was saved from burning when it was smuggled into Ireland. In the movie, there is an absolutely wonderful cat called Pangur-Ban (named after this *delightful* ancient poem!) 

At one point in the story, a fae girl even enchants him to steal a key!  


Amelie – Finally, we had to give a shoutout to the cat in Amelie! This is not a movie about cats, but this fairy-tale cat wanders through the margins of this profoundly everyday magical story. What’s more cat-like than that? And of course, how could not mention a cat who loves children’s stories?

So there you have it, seven of our very favorite cats from the big and small screens. If you found this post purrrrfectly delightful, please consider clicking here to register for our LIVE lecture on “Folkloric Felines”! It’s going to be RIDICULOUSLY fun (and we can’t wait to talk about even MORE awesome cats!!)

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