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Devil Bat

4.0 out of 5 stars 89 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

After brilliant scientist Dr. Paul Carruthers (Bela Lugosi) develops an ingenious product for a cosmetics company, he is cheated out of his fair share of the profits by his greedy partners. Hell bent for revenge, he decides to turn his laboratory of science into one of doom as he creates a giant race of bats that turn into ripping and shredding beasts of fury, designed to attack anyone wearing the very product he invented. This classic horror film finally gets the beautiful HD remastering it deserves. SPECIAL FEATURES: Audio Commentary by Richard Harland Smith (film historian and TCM columnist)

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Bela Lugosi, Suzanne Kaaren, Dave O'Brien, Guy Usher, Yolande Donlan
  • Directors: Jean Yarbrough
  • Writers: George Bricker, John T. Neville
  • Producers: Guy V. Thayer Jr., Jack Gallagher
  • Format: Black & White, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Rph Productions
  • DVD Release Date: September 3, 2002
  • Run Time: 68 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (89 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00006G8HQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #175,617 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Devil Bat" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Parker Benchley VINE VOICE on September 25, 2002
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
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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By A Customer on August 16, 2000
Format: DVD
I must admit, I was sweating bullets when I brought this DVD home, I was convinced that there would be something wrong with it, either bad audio, bad video or both. I have both of these films on the digitally remastered versions of the "Bela Lugosi Collection" VHS tapes whose manufacturers name escapes me at the moment. I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the picture and sound. And after seeing this DVD, I think it looks even better than the tapes, as well it should! No extras though, I was never big into the "extras" anyway, besides you can't expect many with films like these, but I still love 'em! My hat is off to the Roan Group...I know they've released quite a number of these films on DVD that the bigger studios won't touch, and I've passed them up a number of times, until now. So take my word for it, If you've held off on this DVD waiting for some sucker to "jump in" and write a crappy review, I hate to disappoint you. This is a pleasant surprise. So come on in, Bela fans, the water's fine!
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Format: 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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Format: 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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