In The Bat, top-billed Vincent Price brings his silky, sinister elegance to the second remake of the hoary "old dark house" stage play. But the real stars of the show are Agnes Moorehead, as an eccentric mystery writer who... more » decides to pull off the million-dollar bank heist, and the steel-clawed killer known only as "The Bat." Price's devious doctor is but one of a rogues' gallery of suspects that include a Johnny-on-the-spot police detective, a chauffeur turned butler with a checkered past, and a housekeeper with echoes of Rebecca's Mrs. Danvers. Moorehead is a kick as the spirited author, and makes the most of her expanded role, but fans of the early film productions (1926's The Bat and 1930's The Bat Whispers, both directed by Roland West) will be less forgiving of other changes, especially writer-director Crane Wilbur's decision to draw the story out over a succession of nights. Wilbur loses the tension and claustrophobia of the originals with a rambling pace and handsome but airy photography, more appropriate to an episode of Perry Mason. Moorehead and Price bring a little spirit to the otherwise bland film, but not quite enough. --Sean Axmaker« less
"The Bat is a remake of the 1930 film "The Bat Whispers"--which itself was a remake of the silent film "The Bat". This version has the benefit of Vincent Price and Agnes Moorehead leading the cast. Price is a writer who comes to spend the summer at a spooky mansion. A hooded, steel-clawed killer known only as The Bat is terrorizing the locals at the same time. Director Crane Wilbur builds great atmosphere and fans of the genre won't be dissappointed. The DVD is full-frame, with good but not spectacular audio."
Things That Go Bump in the Night.
Robert S. Clay Jr. | St. Louis, MO., USA | 10/25/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"They brushed the dust off the creaky old Mary Roberts Rinehart story, and produced this minor league suspense flick at Allied Artists. No doubt, Vincent Price had marquee value, but his role is of lesser note in the plot. Agnes Moorehead dominates the movie. She leases the spooky old mansion and murder follows. Moorehead was in her pre-Endora glory in this flick. As mystery writer Cornelia van Gorder, she is by turns comic and abrasive. Overacting is plentiful. As Moorehad wanders the mansion on the night of the murder, she wears diaphanous sleepwear and displays some surprising decolletage. The heaving bosoms at Hammer Films have nothing on old Agnes. Some of the other casting is just as quirky. Darla Hood, of all people, shows up in an adult role long enough to get bumped off by The Bat. She would have been better off hanging out with Spanky and Alfalfa down at the old clubhouse. Gavin Gordon (Lord Byron in "Bride of Frankenstein" prologue) plays the hapless police inspector. Lizze Allen (Lenita Lane, if it matters), Cornelia's housekeeper, goes around calling her "Miss Corny" amidst double negatives. There is a lot of screaming on dark and stormy nights. The Bat prowls around in a fedora, dark head mask, and wearing gloves with steel claws. Necks are crushed and then lacerated. This was years before mad slasher flicks. This flick shows some early potential, but eventually settles back into a so-so low budget mystery thriller. From this point, you are on your own. ;-)"
Baaad dvd transfer!!!
Bindy Sue FrÝnkŁnschtein | 10/26/2003
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I thought this movie was pretty good.Vincent Price was great as usual and Agnes Moorehead gave a good performance as well.The reason I gave this movie 1 star is that the dvd transfer is bad.It's so bad that you can hardly enjoy the movie because your attention is on the bad picture quality of this dvd.I do not recommend this dvd.I just ordered another copy of this movie from amazon.It's from a different distributer(Anchor Bay Entertainment).It's more expensive but I figured I'd give it a shot."
Bindy Sue FrÝnkŁnschtein | under the rubble | 03/10/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Agnes Moorehead carries the whole show as a mystery writer who rents out a spooky mansion. With her wisdom and wit, she must figure out the secret behind "The Bat", that dastardly devil w/ no face, no name, and claws of razor-sharp steel! He's after some loot hidden in the house, but where? Darla Hood (yep, from the little rascals) is all grown up and ready to meet her doom at the hands of the shadowy killer! Others will also perish, as the bat's reign of terror continues! Vincent Price is along for the fun with loads of charm and smirks! THE BAT is a good addition to any thriller-diller collection..."
Poorly produced, don't bother!!!!
Bindy Sue FrÝnkŁnschtein | 10/22/2003
(1 out of 5 stars)
"This disc is very poorly produced, besides the fact it was duped from a VHS copy, it even had the right side cropped. The picture quality is obviously low, and there is no additional features on the disc, just play movie and 4 sections (button) for the movie index. Give me a copy of the movie on VHS and I could do better on my computer! There are only 2 version of the same movie on DVD currently available on Amazon. Now you know this one sucks, you can give the other one (released by Anchor Bay Entertainment) a try. PS. Their (Aplpha Video) version of the Charade is piss poor as well."