When I was young, I watched Pete’s Dragon and Mary Poppins to the point of exhaustion. I loved any movie that combined live action with animation. Pete and Mary do share more than their animation combo.
Both movies have magical beings (dragons and ladies) who solve the problems of children before heading off to find others in need. It always felt so heartbreakingly selfless to my young mind. The dragon helped Pete…find new parents or friends or something, and Mary Poppins showed us that greed and old people are bad. With all problems solved, they said goodbye and were on their ways.
This does not happen in A Talking Cat!?! Assuming Duffy, the talking cat, actually solves some problems (he doesn’t), he should be on his way to help the next family or families in need. That’s where A Talking Cat!?! flips the script. The families in the movie decide to keep Duffy. They capture a magical talking being for their own pleasure.
And, as the rules of the film state, Duffy can only talk to each of them once. So the families have used up Duffy’s magic. He’ll never talk to them again, and they still decide to keep him.
What kind of ending is this? I guess we can find comfort in the fact that Duffy won’t unleash his “helping” on anybody else. Is that the lesson? Or is it a lesson in hoarding? Sure, you don’t need that cat now, but maybe someday it’ll have some value.
A Talking Cat!?! is about hoarding. It all makes so much more sense now.