Horrorfest 2018 Presents: The Bat (1959, Crane Wilbur)


Playing out as part mystery, part early style giallo, The Bat (1959) is a solid and enjoyable remake of a film I have never seen. Having Vincent Price and Agnes Moorehead anchor a reliable cast is a good move on Crane Wilbur’s part, and Price’s character exists in a gray area this time, unlike his usual villainous roles. I liked that The Bat was this shadowy killer, and in giallo/mystery fashion the viewer has to guess who he or she is throughout the movie. I also dug that in the 1950s era of sci-fi monster horror and aliens that a movie such as this one exists. Even if the movie is a tad by the numbers, although back in the 1950s viewers were probably freaked out by a mad killer ripping out people’s throats.

Also the make and look of The Bat reminds me of some later horror and action movies featuring a killer operating in such a manner, and even an episode from The Avengers’ TV show. There is even the breaking of the forth wall from Moorehead’s mystery writer who ends up in a meta experience, something that has been since used quite a lot in cinema. I recommend this movie, if only because it’s a nice and mostly fun movie that would be a good introduction to horror for younger audiences and those who cannot handle gore or too many frights.

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