Cat-Women of the Moon

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Cat Women of the Moon
Lobby Card
Directed by Arthur Hilton
Produced by Jack Rabin
Al Zimbalist
Written by Roy Hamilton
Starring Sonny Tufts
Victor Jory
Marie Windsor
Music by Elmer Bernstein
Cinematography William P. Whitley
Edited by John A. Bushelman
Distributed by Astor Pictures
Release dates
  • September 3, 1953 (1953-09-03)
Running time
64 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Cat-Women of the Moon is an independently made 1953 black-and-white science fiction film directed by Arthur Hilton and released by Astor Pictures. It stars Sonny Tufts, Victor Jory, and Marie Windsor. The musical score was composed by Elmer Bernstein.[1] (though most notably his last name is misspelled as "Bernstien" in the opening credits)


An expedition to the moon encounters a race of "Cat-Women," the last eight survivors of a 2-million-year-old civilization, deep within a cave where they have managed to maintain the remnants of a breathable atmosphere that once covered the moon. The remaining air will soon be gone and they must escape if they are to survive. They plan to steal the expedition's spaceship and return to Earth.

Through the use of their telepathic ability the Cat-Women have been subliminally controlling Helen Salinger (Marie Windsor) so she can win the navigator slot on the expedition and lead the crew to their location. Once Helen and the male members of the crew arrive on the moon the Cat-Women take complete control of her mind. They are unable to control the men's minds, but they work around this obstacle with Helen's help and the use of their superior abilities and feminine wiles. "Show us their weak points," one says to Helen. "We'll take care of the rest."

Along with telepathy, the Cat-Women have the ability to transport themselves unseen from place to place within the cave. They use this ability to steal the crew's spacesuits from the mouth of the cave, where they were left unguarded.

Using Helen to smooth things over after an earlier failed attack on the crew, the Cat-Women approach the men openly. Food and drink are brought out and a party ensues. Kip (Victor Jory) is suspicious after discovering the spacesuits are missing and confronts the Cat-Women's leader Alpha (Carol Brewster), who promises to return the suits in the morning. Kip sits alone, unable to intervene while the Cat-Women exploit the "weak points" of expedition commander Laird (Sonny Tufts) and the other men.

Soon the Cat-Women have learned how to operate the spaceship and are well on their way to success. But Lambda (Susan Morrow) falls in love with crew member Doug (William Phipps) and tells him of the plot. Carrying three spacesuits, Alpha, Beta and Helen make a break for the ship. Lambda teleports ahead to delay them and is killed by Beta (Suzanne Alexander). Kip catches up and fires several shots; Alpha and Beta are killed and Helen is uninjured. The expedition escapes and begins their return trip to Earth.


Critical reception[edit]

Upon the film's release, Variety magazine wrote: "This imaginatively conceived and produced science-fiction yarn [an original story by producers Zimbalist and Rabin] takes the earth-to-moon premise and embellishes it with a civilization of cat-women on the moon...Cast ably portray their respective roles . . . Arthur Hilton makes his direction count in catching the spirit of the theme, and art direction is far above average for a film of this calibre. William Whitley's 3-D photography provides the proper eerie quality."[2]

The New York Times wrote: "They (The Cat-women) try to get their hands on the visitors' rocket ship, hoping to come down here and hypnotize us all. Considering the delegation that went up, it's hard to imagine why."[3]



  1. ^ Cat-Women of the Moon at the Internet Movie Database
  2. ^ Variety. Film review, 193. Last accessed: February 7, 2008.
  3. ^ The New York Times, "Cat Women of the Moon at the Rialto", by H.H.T., March 20, 1954
  4. ^ L.A.Connection web site.

External links[edit]