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39 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps the Definitive Version of This Lugosi Classic
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...
Published on September 25, 2002 by Parker Benchley

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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Actor - Dull Movie
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...
Published on March 2, 2002 by Psychedelic Cowboy


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39 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps the Definitive Version of This Lugosi Classic, September 25, 2002
By 
Parker Benchley "Edward Garea" (Branchville, New Jersey United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
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This review is from: Devil Bat (DVD)
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.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You will do it! Or Dr.Shooveocker I will put a evil course upon you...., September 22, 2008
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This review is from: Devil Bat - In COLOR! Also Includes the Restored Black-and-White Version! (DVD)
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
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Ah My Friend, Our Theory Of Glandular Stimulation Was Correct!", February 18, 2007
This review is from: Devil Bat (DVD)
"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.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Super clear picture, great colorization, February 10, 2014
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This review is from: Devil Bat - In COLOR! Also Includes the Restored Black-and-White Version! (DVD)
I saw this movie a few times on late-night TV during the 1950s when the movie was only about 15 years old and still looked "modern." When VHS came out in the 1980s I bought a copy and enjoyed it over and over with my two adult children. Then a few years ago I acquired a DVD copy which had better picture quality than the VHS tape which was, by then, just about worn out from use. It's become a family cult-classic to us and we know the script forward and backward. When I saw this "colorized" version on Amazon frankly I didn't expect much because the sets in the film are relatively uninteresting--a chemist's lab, a newspaper office, a police chief's office, a hotel room and an upper-class living room, plus a few scenes outdoors at night. What can you do with "color" in those dull settings, I asked myself.

What a great surprise I had when I watched the movie in color. First of all the picture quality is vastly superior to that on my other DVD copy and I noticed things that I had never noticed before despite having seen this movie at least 100 times over the years. Examples: heavy marble and glass ash trays on desks at the newspaper office, the police office and a businessman's office; models of "modern" airplanes on Joe McGinty's desk, cookies on a plate in the patio tea scene (Mary Heath serving tea to the reporter and photographer)--on my old copy it wasn't clear what, if anything, was on the plate; cast-iron lawn furniture in the garden designed in a pretty fern frond pattern (the pattern was never discernable to me before), three floor-model art-deco cabinet radios (in Joe McGinty's office, the chemist's lab and the police station), a big wooden table model radio in the hotel room, a plastic art-deco small table model radio in Mary Heath's bedroom. All of this was "there" in the older DVD and VHS copies, but they were never eye-catching or "noticeable" so to speak. All this new clarity puts you right back there in 1940 with 1940 surroundings. And as to the color, that makes everything even more 1940: pretty blue-patterned draperies and portieres in the Heath living room, a pink flower arrangement on a low table in that room (I had never noticed the flower arrangement or the portieres before); the yellow Duesenburg roadster driven by Roy Heath; the red-patterned draperies in the hotel room and then there were the colors and textures of the clothes--a light blue suit in a smooth fabric worn by the reporter in a few scenes, then a tweed textured light green suit in another; Mary Heath's complicated 1940 coiffure (identical to my mother's at her wedding in 1940!); All of these details that I missed in the old versions come right to life with this better picture clarity and color. Even hairs out of place on the heads of Dr. Carruthers and the photographer! There was just one wrong color: the telephone in Mary Heath's bedroom is pink to match the rest of the decor but in 1940 the telephone companies owned all the phones and you got a black phone unless you paid a substantial extra monthly fee on your phone bill for an ivory-colored one and there were no other colors. Phones in lots of different colors didn't come till the late 1950s. Otherwise, the colors are all perfect for the period and really bring this picture to life.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LUGOSI ESTATE VERSION IN THE ONLY WAY TO GO! MORE PLEASE!, May 7, 2014
This review is from: Devil Bat (DVD)
I have always been a fan of Bela Lugosi and his films. The definitive Dracula always brought something special to any role given to him, even these lesser quality low rent productions. 'Devil Bat' is actually a very fun film with Lugosi giving it his all, sure the special FX are campy as is the idea(after shave lotion to attract giant killer bats!), but it is still very entertaining non-the-less.

I have seen battered prints over the years and heard about this edition after it was OOP. I tracked down a copy at a reasonable price and prepared to be disappointed......I was NOT! This film NEVER looked any where near this good and that alone it reason to buy this edition. To sweeten the pot(so to speak), the extras are very nice, including a very interesting and funny commentary, listen as Bela Jr. and Ted Newsome seem to run out of things to talk about regarding the film. Fortunately, this doesn't hurt the commentary as they talk about Lugosi coming to America and Bela Jr's childhood with his father and rest of the family. The other extras include a repo Devil Bat poster card which is very nice, some trailers and a radio program featuring Bela Lugosi.

I know a lot of people think these old films are rather disposable, but I can tell you that seeing them looking crisp and clean makes all the difference. I grew up with this stuff and I hope that future generations will see the positives to restoring these old films. I have heard that they have canceled future releases and the only other films released like this is 'Bowery at Midnight'...too bad, I would have loved to have seen many more of these films done justice. For other quality releases of older films look into Roan Group Archives, they have some great double features and single releases.
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Actor - Dull Movie, March 2, 2002
This review is from: Devil Bat [VHS] (VHS Tape)
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!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A delightfully corny classic of 1940s B horror., April 6, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Devil Bat [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Bela Lugosi, in top form, stars as the beloved Dr. Carruthers, who has invented a new shaving lotion (which he seems to think is as important as a cure for cancer). Little do the townsfolk suspect that it is HE who is responsible for the current rash of bizarre killings in the town. The good doctor has trained his special fleet of enlarged killer bats to zero in on any throat on which his shaving lotion has been applied. These mad scientists are always such sore losers! Great fun.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Legend Films classic!, March 26, 2014
This review is from: Devil Bat - In COLOR! Also Includes the Restored Black-and-White Version! (DVD)
OK where to start? You have Bela Lugosi, Devil Bat, and amazing colorization!! You just can't go wrong with this one! This is a fabulously fun film for your Halloween party and any time you need a dose of that classic actor Bela Lugosi. It is no wonder he is such a cult classic performer. Have a party with this one!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DEVIL BAT, March 7, 2014
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This review is from: Devil Bat - In COLOR! Also Includes the Restored Black-and-White Version! (DVD)
GREAT HORROR MOVIE. THEY DON'T MAKE MOVIES LIKE THIS ANYMORE. KEEP THEM COMING. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK.LET SEE WHAT COMES UP NEXT.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm gonna suck your blood., February 9, 2014
Just a another great job done by one of my all time favorites, Bela Lugosi. I've watched this film numerous times, and has not bored me by any means.
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Devil Bat - In COLOR! Also Includes the Restored Black-and-White Version!
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