Bad movies that never looked so good!
Tom Terry | Orlando, FL | 11/24/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I'm like a lot of old horror movie buffs that have purchased 2nd rate copies of the rare classics because that's all that was available. And it wasn't the poor duplication process, it was the poor surviving master tapes that gave us an often fuzzy vision. You could call it horrific for the "Devil Bat" until the Roan group took charge. What you will get is a fantasically remastered version of a Bela "must have". I was taken aback by the quality of the newly mastered version on this DVD. Kudos also for the "Scared to Death" remaster that shows Bela in his colored glory. Although it's not in as good a shape as "Devil Bat", it's not bad and considering the lack of attention to early film preservation. Highly recommended."
For any fan of Bela Lugosi, this is a must have disk!
Robert S Bauer | Louisville, KY United States | 09/06/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Bela Lugosi made both good movies (Dracula)and, what some would consider, bad movies (Bride of the Monster). I consider the movies on this disk, somewhere in between. The Devil Bat is a lot of fun to watch. It's definitely the better movie of the two. Scared to Death was Lugosi's only color film, so if for no other reason, it's worth a look. The video and sound quality for both of these movies are surprisingly good. For any fan of Bela Lugosi, this is a must have disk."
A Bela Lugosi Double Feature
Edward Garea | Branchville, New Jersey United States | 04/11/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As of late there have been many Lugosi movies released on DVD. This double feature is among the best. The Devil Bat (1940) is Lugosi's only movie for Producer's Releasing Corporation, one of Hollywood's many infamous Poverty Row studios. Bela plays Dr. Carruthers, a mad scientist out for revenge against the partners he felt double-crossed him. His instrument of revenge is an electronically enlarged bat, attracted to its intended victims by the odor of a strange perfume Bela has concocted for just this purpose. With a plot such as this, the movie could be simply flat and unwatchable. If not for Bela, that is. Faced with such a prospect and being the dedicated actor he was, Bela plays it up beautifully. Instead of merely being hammy and letting it go at that, he brings certain nuances to his role, using double entendres at times. (Inducing a potential victim to try his shaving lotion, he declares that the victim "will never use anything else.") In fact, he ends up winning our sympathy in a scene with one of his "partners" where it becomes somewhat apparent that poor old Bela was swindled into an inferior deal. No wonder he's mad. Assisting Bela in this wonderful nonsense is Dave O'Brien (Reefer Madness) as the hero, Donald Kerr as the hero's sidekick, and Suzanne Kaaren as the ingénue. Look for Arthur Q. Bryan, more famous as the voice of Elmer Fudd, as O'Brien and Kerr's boss.Scared to Death is Lugosi's only color film, and as such, is a must for Lugosi fans and collectors. It is a tepid story narrated by a recently deceased woman from her slab in the morgue as to how she got that way. Billy Wilder later used a variation of this in Sunset Boulevard, but, of course, he did it much better. Given the almost total lack of any action in this film a more appropriate title might have been Bored to Death. Nat Pendleton and George Zucco offer whatever support they can to the proceedings. A note of interest is that while suffering from a form of dementia in a psychiatric hospital, George Zucco was said to have scared himself to death with visions of ghosts and demons coming after him. It certainly couldn't have been from watching this film.Excellent quality of video transfer and easy to use menus make this a bargain for the price."