That sounds like the pilot episode of the TV series "The Fantastic Journey." It was very '70s looking, a couple hours long, and the plot involved the group being stuck in the ancient civilization of Atlantis, which was all technological and ruled/run by this big red brain thing. It was one of those deals that absorbed me at the time, but if I saw it now I'd cringe in shame.http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0075503/
I don't know about the telepathic with cats thing, though. That doesn't ring a bell.