Saturday Morning Cartoons: The Rabbi's Cat

France | 2011 | 89 min. | Antoine Deslevaux, Joann Sfar

April 22, 2023

Saturday Morning Cartoons

The story of a rabbi and his talking cat – a sharp-tongued feline philosopher brimming with scathing humor and a less than pure love for the rabbi’s voluptuous teenage daughter. Recommended for ages 12+.

Algeria in the 1930s is an intersection of Jewish, Arab and French culture. A cat belonging to a widowed rabbi and his beautiful daughter, Zlabya, eats the family parrot and miraculously gains the ability to speak. Along with the power of speech comes unparalleled sardonic wit, and the cat – and filmmaker Sfar – spare no group or individual as they skewer faith, tradition and authority in a provocative exploration of (among other things) God, lust, death, phrenology, religious intolerance, interspecies love, and the search for truth. Rich with the colors, textures, flavors and music of Mediterranean Africa, the film embarks on a cross continent adventure from the tiled terraces, fountains, quays and cafes of colonial Algiers to Maghrebi tent camps, dusty trading outposts, and deep blue Saharan nights in search of a lost Ethiopian city.

  • Original Language Title: Le Chat Du Rabbin
  • Director: Antoine Deslevaux, Joann Sfar
  • Principal Cast: François Morel, Maurice Bénichou, Hafsia Herzi
  • Country: France, Austria
  • Year: 2011
  • Running Time: 89 min.
  • Screenplay: Joann Sfar, Sandrina Jardel
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • US Distributor: GKids
  • International Sales: TF1