Felix the Cat: The Movie

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Felix the cat the movie 2257.jpg

Felix the Cat: The Movie is a feature length film from The Renaissance Age of Animation, starring Felix the Cat, a Funny Animal who walks the earth and happens to own a Magic Bag Of Tricks, who travels into another dimension after being summoned by a sentient teardrop to save the Kingdom of Oriana and its Princess from her Evil Uncle, The Duke Of Zill, and his army of robotic cylinders.

No, really.

The film was produced by Pannonia Film Studio in Hungary, and directed by Tibor Hernádi. The film is estimated to have been completed in 1986 or 1987, but it only received limited release in 1988 and 1989, finally getting its full release in the United States in August 1991. The film was a box-office failure, due in part to being released in the same month as Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Amblin's An American Tail: Fievel Goes West and Don Bluth's Rock-a-Doodle. Ironically, it received many airings on Disney Channel, which, along with subsequent VHS rereleases, allowed the film to gain a small following.

Tropes used in Felix the Cat: The Movie include:
  • A God Am I: The sentient reptiles and amphibians that inhabit Zil believed that the Duke of Zil was a god who had come to help them when he was banished there. He took full advantage of it. He wants Oriana's Book of Ultimate Power to become the real deal.
  • Another Dimension: Oriana
  • Anticlimax: The final battle. Just. The final battle.
  • All That Glitters: Played aggravatingly straight in the ending. The professor tries to sneak gold back into his world through the dimensporter, only for Oriana to tell him that the it can't transport gold, and then tells Felix that she's pretty sure his gold can be transported. He says he doesn't have any gold, but she insists that he does: a heart of gold.
  • Awesome Bag Of Tricks: Felix's bag of tricks can turn into just about anything the plot calls for.
  • Big Damn Movie
  • Non Sequitur Episode: This movie is only loosely connected to the 1960s Felix TV series.
    • However it does fit with the spirit of the "Twisted Tails" version quite well. Except in Twisted, the weirdness was there in the service of the Rule of Funny. In this film, it's hard to discern what the ultimate goal of the oddness was.
  • Canon Discontinuity: The movie is NEVER brought up outside of maybe a historical handwave from the creators, and none of the movies characters appear in merchandising.
  • Captain Ersatz: The Duke of Zil is basically a revamped, humanoid, Master Cylinder. Makes you wonder why they put Master Cylinder in?
  • Cats Are Mean: Felix makes fun of the dead at one point.
  • Circus of Fear: Lizardi's Circus.
  • Conspicuous CG: Felix's disembodied, badly lip-synched head in the opening. It really teeters into Uncanny Valley territory on account of Special Effects Failure. Also a source of Nightmare Fuel for some young viewers.
  • Cool Ship: The Professor and Pointdexter's transforming ship.
  • Covers Always Lie: Just look at how colorful and upbeat that poster is. Outside of the brief glimpses of Felix's world, the entire film is NOTHING like that.
  • Crapsack World: Oriana is reduced to an apocalyptic wasteland when the Duke takes over.
    • "Where are we, New Jersey?"
    • Not quite. The Land of Zil is a hell hole that the Duke made worse. From what we can see, Oriana gets covered in large crystals.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: Averted with the family of foxes Felix encounters early in the film who can't find him hiding under the bag. Lampshaded with the accompanying "Sly Like A Fox" song.
  • Damsel in Distress
  • Darker and Edgier: Probably the first ever attempt at taking a classic cartoon icon and giving it this treatment.
  • Death World: Zil is inhabited by Exclusively Evil sentient reptiles, sadistic cannibal giants that can detach their heads, dragons and the entire landscape of Oriana is constantly covered in a downpour of rapidly growing crystals.
  • Deranged Animation: Especially the part early in the film where Felix is underwater. If one of the films goals was to capture the surreal nature of the original shorts, it did its job a bit TOO well.
  • Dueling Movies: With Disney's Beauty and The Beast, An American Tail: Fievel Goes West and Rock-a-Doodle. It had no chance.
  • Deus Ex Machina: The book.
  • Development Hell: The film technically was finished as early as 1988, but was left locked away for years until someone decided to dig it out and release it. Why they didn't take this extra time to touch up on the film's flaws (especially the glaring animation errors) is anyone's guess.
  • Disney Acid Sequence: Face to the Wind, anyone?
  • Disney Villain Death: Wack Lizardi, who falls from a great height and onto his circus, taking it with him.
  • Egopolis: Oriana
  • Everything's Better with Princesses
  • Evil Chancellor: Grumper
  • Evil Uncle
  • The Faceless: The Duke Of Zil. Oddly, one trailer for the film shows that the Duke's eyes were supposed to be originally visible, but this was cut from the movie. His original human form is shown in flashback, though.
  • Fish Out of Water: In a Magical Land, no less.
  • Forgot About His Powers: Felix would have finished the hero work a lot more quickly if he took more advantage of what the Bag of Tricks could do.
  • Freudian Excuse: The Duke was possibly driven insane by the accident that left him permanently trapped inside a life support suit.
  • Good Is Dumb: Princess Oriana disbanded her kingdom's army in a world where there's headhunters, mutants, giant dragons, and a pissed off uncle her father banished. Guess what happens.
  • Gold Makes Everything Shiny: The book is made of gold.
  • Hair of Gold: The princess.
  • Heel Face Turn: The hunter Felix meets early in the film.
  • Hollywood Cyborg: The Duke.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The Duke's Master Cylinder backfires HORRIBLY on him!
  • Interspecies Romance: Between Felix and Princess Oriana.
  • The Kingdom: Oriana, which was once a warrior empire but has turned away from its old ways and sealed away its old weapons and secrets to be a peaceful and prosperous nation whose army was only for ceremonial purposes. The Duke didn't like that...
  • Large Ham: The Duke of Zil.
    • As well as Oriana's oracle, Ms. Pearl. "A black duck on a green planet!", anyone?
    • Wack Lizardi also comes off as quite hammy, especially when he overemphasizes his lisp.
  • Lizard Folk: Lizardi and most of the inhabitants of Progress City.
  • Lull Destruction: The movie's audio never has any breaks in it.
  • Meaningful Name: Both subverted and played straight with Progress City. Subverted because, despite the name, it's a rundown hellhole of a city in the middle of a polluted swampland. But then if you consider that The Duke wants Oriana to be under his complete control with the subjects idolizing him like a god, Progress City ends up fitting his idea of progress.
  • Mondegreen: "Who is the Boss? A Klu Klux and a Cross."
  • Mood Dissonance: All Felix can do to a skull he finds in the mineshaft is say this:

"Boy, could you use a Big Mac! Uwahahahahaha!"

  • Mecha-Mooks: The Cylinders.
  • Mix and Match Critter: The Mizzards.
    • Most of the inhabitants of Progress City also apply.
  • The Movie
  • No Fourth Wall: The opening CGI head actually has Felix talk to the audience.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries: The mutant seahorse things from the underwater scene. And they shake them for the camera too.
  • Off-Model: The animation ranges from passable to mediocre in the first few parts of the film, and it goes even further after the "Who is the Boss" song?
    • Not to mention the poster, seen at the top of this page. Compare Oriana and the Duke on the poster to how they appear in the film...
  • Opening Narration: That CGI head again. And he patronizes you too.
  • Pardon My Klingon: Scrunted be his name!
  • Panthera Awesome: The Cat Band
  • Place Worse Than Death: The part where Felix comes over a hill and sees Progress City, surrounded by a deadly swamp, to which Felix says "Where are we, New Jersey?" (the latter is Self-Deprecation on the filmmakers part, as Felix Inc. is located in New Jersey)
  • Princess Classic: Oriana
  • Princesses Rule
  • Pungeon Master
  • Random Events Plot: The film really has no sense of direction as far as plot is concerned. The "saving the world" bit doesn't even get started till well more than halfway through the picture—20 minutes and half an hour from the end, to be precise.
  • Real Is Brown
  • The Renaissance Age of Animation
  • Right-Hand-Cat: In a really bizarre example of the trope, Wack Lizardi has a nameless squeaking lizard head mounted to a stick that he uses as a whip for a pet and is never seen without it. It reacts to events that happen onscreen and it's not uncommon for a scene with Wack Lizardi to shift focus from him to the pet.
  • Rotoscoping: Princess Oriana's animation.
  • Save the Princess
  • Sdrawkcab Name: The portal to Oriana is hidden in the Anairo Mines.
  • Self-Deprecation: Felix's New Jersey comment from earlier is a LOT funnier when you realize that Felix the Cat Productions Inc. just happens to be located in New Jersey!
  • Sequel Hook: The Duke's "I'll be back." line which is said in a different voice. Well, it's been almost 20 years and he still hasn't come back!
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: One scene of Felix and the gang fighting monsters has upbeat 1980s pop music playing over it.
  • Steampunk: Oriana has a lot of this.
  • Swiss Army Tears: When the princess of Oriana can't finish summoning Felix, one of her teardrops finishes the job for her...activating the machine, punching in codes, pulling levers, entering the voice command, finding Felix in his world, and leading him back to the portal and into Oriana.
  • Talking to Himself: Felix and The Professor are both voiced by Chris Phillips and they talk to each other quite a bit.
  • Throw the Book At Them: Done by Felix to defeat the Master Cylinder.
  • Took a Level in Badass: The Master Cylinder, who was just a generic villain in the original Felix TV series, makes a rather unexpected comeback as the final weapon of the Duke—he even goes to the trouble of comparing the original to the new one side by side via pictures. Totally ruined, though, since Felix literally just throws a book at it to defeat it.
  • The Unintelligible: Wack Lizardi's unnamed lizard pet, which makes different squeaks depending on what kind of mood it's in.
  • Villain Song: "Who is the Boss?" Rather catchy tune and shows the extent of the Duke's ego.
  • Was Once a Man: The Duke of Zil was an ordinary human before a prototype of his cylindrical soldier robots went haywire, severely disfiguring him and forcing him to rebuild himself.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Felix' bag during a shapeshift will change back to its original form if someone other than Felix touches it.
    • Zil's secret weapon, the Master Cylinder comes out at the end battle. Felix knocks it over by throwing a book at it. Fight scene over.
  • What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome?: Felix literally just defeats the Master Cylinder by throwing a book at it.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: So, what happened to all the other imprisoned circus performers? You can assume they escaped after Wack Lizardi was defeated (even though an entire circus dropped on top of them), but that still means they're stuck in a polluted wasteland.
  • Wretched Hive: Progress City.