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Film / The Vampire Bat

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"These are the TALONS of the Vampire Bat!"

The Vampire Bat is a 1933 B-Movie Sci-Fi Horror film directed by Frank R. Strayer, starting Lionel Atwill, Fay Wray, Melvyn Douglas, and Dwight Frye.

The village of Kleinschloss has run into a small problem. You see, a Serial Killer is on the loose, draining people of their blood, and superstitious townsfolk think a vampire is on the loose. A detective is sent to investigate the murders, and discovers a secret related to a scientist's mysterious experiments...

This film contains examples of:

  • Actually Not a Vampire: The "vampire" is really the hypnotized henchman of a Mad Scientist.
  • Animal Motifs: The killer has bats, with a recent infestation of them being treated as a sign that he's a vampire, and a man with a fondness for them being framed for his crimes.
  • Big Bad: Dr. Otto von Niemann is responsible for the killings through his hypnotized slave.
  • Creating Life Is Bad: Von Neimann is collecting blood from his victims to create a living organism.
  • Dies Wide Open: Georgiana the servant, when Aunt Gussie finds her in bed.
  • For Doom the Bell Tolls: A bell in a clock tower ominously tolls the hour at the start of the film.
  • Frame-Up: The killer subtly manipulates the village into thinking​ the village idiot is the vampire.
  • Have You Told Anyone Else?: Von Neimann takes advantage of his trusted community position by being the first to know of any evidence for his crimes, so he can snuff out whomever told him. He asks Georgiana this after she finds the incriminating crucifix in Emil's room, and when she answers that she hasn't, she becomes the next victim.
  • High-Class Glass: Dr. Von Neumann has one that he only uses for reading, but it still helps make him look snooty.
  • Mad Scientist Laboratory: Dr. Von Neimann's lab is filled with the usual collection of ornate flasks and spiral glass tubes, all with bubbling liquid.
  • Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant: Herman, the village idiot, has many pet bats when most of the village is terrified of them.
  • Psychic Link: Dr. Von Neimann has some sort of mind control power over Emil. He can sit at his desk and direct Emil on the roof as Emil crawls over to Karl's window.
  • The Sociopath: Dr. Otto von Neimann brainwashes a guy and then has him kill people and drain their blood for his experiments in creating life. He even kills his maid, the one person he seems to care about.
  • Something Else Also Rises: Karl finds Ruth in the lab, and kisses her. A cork stopper on a bubbling flask pops out.
    Karl: Are your kisses dynamite?
  • Splash of Color: The film is entirely black and white until the torch-wielding mob is shown chasing Hermann. Their torches are colored red, for dramatic effect.
  • Torches and Pitchforks: The mob that chases poor Hermann to his death are wielding torches.
  • Wolves Always Howl at the Moon: Naturally there's a wolf howling somewhere as the creepy might watchman skulks about in the opening scene.

Alternative Title(s): Blood Sucker, Forced To Sin