June 7, 2015
The Vampire Bat.
Review #708: The Vampire Bat.
Lionel Atwill (Dr. Otto von Niemann), Fay Wray (Ruth Bertin), Melvyn Douglas (Karl Breettschneider), Maude Eburne (Gussie Schnappmann), George E. Stone (Kringen), Dwight Frye (Herman Gleib), Robert Frazer (Emil Borst), and Rita Carlisle (Martha Mueller) Directed by Frank R. Strayer.
Well, it's certainly a quick movie. At 63 minutes, this is a movie that was released just a month before another Atwill-Wray movie would be released (Mystery of the Wax Museum), but this one was released by Majestic Pictures, a studio known for cheap flicks made quickly. And since this is in public domain, you can find this movie anywhere on the Internet. But the question is would you want to? That depends. The sets look nice and scenic, fitting well with what the movie is trying to do so quickly. The characters are fine, save for Eburne's comic relief character, an anxious panicky character who almost ruins the balance that Wray and Douglas have with each other. Atwill is a good lead character (who pops up in numerous 1930's films). The ending is at least something different from most vampire films, though your reaction may vary on your level of disbelief. Extra points for having Dwight Frye as a supporting character, which is always welcome. If you're up for some quick cheap horror thrills, I'd say this movie is for you. Is it an old flick? As the old saying goes, 82 is the new 40. Or 30.
Overall, I give it 7 out of 10 stars.