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The Devil Bat (1940)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 13 December 1940 (USA)
A mad scientist develops an aftershave lotion that causes his gigantic bats to kill anyone who wears it.

Director:

Jean Yarbrough (as Jean Yarborough)

Writers:

John T. Neville (screen play by) (as John Thomas Neville), George Bricker (original story by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bela Lugosi ... Dr. Paul Carruthers
Suzanne Kaaren ... Mary Heath
Dave O'Brien ... Johnny Layton
Guy Usher Guy Usher ... Henry Morton
Yolande Donlan ... Maxine (as Yolande Mallott)
Donald Kerr Donald Kerr ... 'One-Shot' McGuire
Edmund Mortimer Edmund Mortimer ... Martin Heath (as Edward Mortimer)
Gene O'Donnell Gene O'Donnell ... Don Morton
Alan Baldwin Alan Baldwin ... Tommy Heath
John Ellis John Ellis ... Roy Heath
Arthur Q. Bryan Arthur Q. Bryan ... Joe McGinty
Hal Price ... Chief Wilkins
John Davidson ... Prof. Raines
Billy Griffith Billy Griffith ... Coroner (scenes deleted)
Wally Rairden Wally Rairden ... Walter King (as Wally Rairdon)
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Storyline

Dr. Carruthers feels bitter at being betrayed by his employers, Heath and Morton, when they became rich as a result of a product he devised. He gains revenge by electrically enlarging bats and sending them out to kill his employers' family members by instilling in the bats a hatred for a particular perfume he has discovered, which he gets his victims to apply before going outdoors. Johnny Layton, a reporter, finally figures out Carruthers is the killer and, after putting the perfume on himself, douses it on Carruthers in the hopes it will get him to give himself away. One of the two is attacked as the giant bat makes one of its screaming, swooping power dives. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He's Trained His Brood of Blood-Hungry Bats to Kill on Command! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 December 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Killer Bats See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film received its first documented telecasts in New York City Wednesday 4 August 1948 on WCBS (Channel 2), in Albuquerque Saturday 20 August 1949 on KOB (Channel 4), in Chicago Wednesday 5 October 1949 on WGN (Channel 9), and in Los Angeles Thursday 23 March 1950 on KTLA (Channel 5). See more »

Goofs

After Johnny Layton (Dave O'Brien) shoots and kills one of the devil bats, the article in the Chicago Register states his name as Henry Layton, while another one in the Springfield daily correctly names him as Johnny. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Paul Carruthers: I tell you, Layton, expecting a bat to be attracted by the scent of a lotion is all foolishness.
See more »

Crazy Credits

[Prologue] All Heathville loved Paul Carruthers, their kindly village doctor. No one suspected that in his home laboratory on a hillside overlooking the magnificent estate of Martin Heath, the doctor found time to conduct certain private experiments -- weird, terrifying experiments. See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a colorized version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pale Moonlight Theater (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

Lesson - giant bats and Tibetan aftershave don't mix! Horror legend Lugosi makes this third rate material fun.
10 February 2004 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

Bela Lugosi will always be remembered as one of the greatest horror stars of all time for 'Dracula'. Less than ten years later he was forced to star in third rate material like 'The Devil Bat'. He had supporting roles in a couple of good movies like 'The Wolf Man' (with Lon Chaney and Claude Rains) and 'The Body Snatcher' (with Karloff) after this, but for the most part his career was in severe decline, culminating in the awful (but awfully entertaining) movies he made with Ed Wood, Jr. ('Glen Or Glenda', 'Bride Of The Monster' and very briefly, 'Plan 9 From Outer Space') 'The Devil Bat' is b-grade all the way, with a lousy script, uninspired direction, a ridiculous looking "devil bat", and a forgettable supporting cast, led by 'Reefer Madness' Dave O'Brien. The only reason to watch this is Lugosi. Sometimes he seems to be actually trying, at others he hams it up. Either way he's great to watch. He plays a scientist who works for a hugely successful perfume company. In his laboratory he experiments on a bat with electricity which makes it grow very large, and that, combined with his new aftershave which contains a Tibetan scent which enrages the bat(!), becomes his method or vengeance on his employers. You think I'm making this up, don't you? Look, this is a silly movie, but if you're a Lugosi fan you'll have fun.


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