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Perhaps the Definitive Version of This Lugosi Classic
Edward Garea | Branchville, New Jersey United States | 09/25/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Among horror fans, Lugosi fans, and fans of psychotronic films in general, "The Devil Bat" holds a special place. Made by poverty row studio PRC in 1940, the film is a wonderfully ridiculous chiller about a mad scientist (Lugosi, of course)who takes revenge on his double-crossers (no, not the producers of this movie) by enlarging a normal bat to gigantic proportions through electrical treatments and using a new shaving lotion he perfected as the bait to attract the bat to its victim. ...)...The film has kicked around the public domain for the last decade or so, with the result that VHS prints of it were either excellent or hardly watchable. DVD versions in general have been clear, but this version beats the others and comes close to being a definitive version of the picture, if one is possible.Released by the Lugosi estate, "The Devil Bat" is the first in a proposed series of definitve versions of Lugosi films. (The unjustly overlooked "Bowery at Midnight" is the second movie in this series.)Extras on this DVD include stills from the movie, a poster card (very well done), and a commentary track featuring Bela Junior and film historian Ted Newsom. The commentary track is a laugh in itself as the two quickly run out of things to say about the movie (in fact, one wonders if Bela Jr. even saw it before this)and switch topics to Bela Junior's memories of life with father. As he provides some unusual insight into the life of his father, the commentary track is a must for all Lugosi fans, and, combined with the price, makes for one of the biggest bargains for film fans."
You will do it! Or Dr.Shooveocker I will put a evil course
CLINT BRONSON | las vegas,NV. | 09/22/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Devil Bat is a great Bela outing. Of course its no DRACULA or MURDERS IN THE RUE MORGUE but its hard not to get a kick out of this grade Z P.R.C opus about a MAD DOCTOR who develops a breed of giant bat he attracts to his enemies with a special after-shave he advises users to rub"on the tender part of your neck." Loads of cheap fun,with cardboard sets and pathetic special effects;Bela seems to be having a ball and so should you! For those of you who love remakes and sequels(???)see The Flying Serpent and Devil Bat's Daughter"
Brilliant Actor - Dull Movie
Psychedelic Cowboy | Burbank, CA United States | 03/02/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"All too often in his career Bela Lugosi was expected to carry a film all by himself with little or no help from other actors, the director, the script or special effects. The Devil Bat (1941) is such a movie. The sets are cheap, the script is hokey and the "devil bat" is laughably lame. And yet as he always does, Bela makes the movie entertaining. He plays one of his
many mad scientists -- this one a (believe it or not) perfume maker who was monetarily wronged by his partners, now millionaires. These ungrateful boobs rub this in a little too much and so Lugosi creates a giant bat (as perfume makers are so good at doing) that will strike at anyone wearing a certain scent. Predictably the mad doctor ends up wearing his own scent and is killed by the devil bat -- but not before he gets his revenge on several of these boring unknown actors who deserve to die. As expected, Lugosi makes the character sympathetic and yet also fearsome as he tells each of his victims, "goodbye" after they try on his new fragrance. This movie has some of the most hackneyed character acting you have ever seen -- and yet Bela never stops giving it all he's got to make this movie a success -- which is more than the movie deserves!Still for the Bela Lugosi fan, this movie is pleasurable as you watch what one great and talented actor can do in one bad movie. One is left wondering how a Tom Cruise or Will Smith would fare in such a weak vehicle. But Bela -- ever the artist -- rises above it and gives a performance that can be enjoyed in spite of its trappings. That's acting!"
"Ah My Friend, Our Theory Of Glandular Stimulation Was Corre
Robert I. Hedges | 02/18/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
""The Devil Bat" is a 1940 classic starring Bela Lugosi as (surprise!) a mad scientist up to no good. Lugosi, as Dr. Paul Carruthers, seems like a model citizen, but evil lurks. Lugosi is a cosmetics researcher (who obviously participates in animal testing) out for vengeance, as he feels betrayed by his employers over money issues. He contrives a nefarious plot to enlarge bats with electricity in conformance with his "theory of glandular stimulation" and simultaneously teaches the bats to target a new shaving lotion he developed especially for people wishing to have their jugulars bisected by giant chiroptera.
Bela is exonerated by the police, but two newspaper reporters look into matters more carefully resulting in a match between Bela and his creation to resolve the movie. Please note the voice of the newspaper editor, Joe McGinty, played by Arthur Q. Bryan. If you think you recognize the voice but can't quite place it you're probably right. He is most widely known as the voice of Elmer Fudd.
The bats themselves are typical of special effects from the era, i.e. big silly contraptions on strings. Although they look better than a lot of later films like "The Giant Claw," flying creatures are hard to get right with models and this is no exception, so some suspension of disbelief will be required. Overall, though, this is a very enjoyable old fashioned horror movie, and fans of the genre and particularly Lugosi will love it; to those people I highly recommend the film."
One Of Bela Lugosi's Most Fondly Remembered Horror Efforts
Simon Davis | 04/10/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Monogram Studio's "The Devil Bat", is definately one of those minor horror efforts which over the years develops a strong cult following. In the case of this minor little horror effort from 1940 it has the added bonus of having the King of "B" horror in the lead in none other than Bela Lugosi who on countless occasions managed to breath life into a story which otherwise would never have retained its appeal over 60 years later. Here Bela Lugosi plays one of his sinister mad doctors to perfection and despite the films limited budget manages to work wonders with the little he has to work with."