Some of them bats is rabid.
The Bat is directed by Crane Wilbur, who co-writes with Avery Hopwood and Mary Roberts Rinehart. It is based on the Wagenhals and Kemper play and is the fourth screen production of the story after two silents in 1915 (as The Circular Staircase), 1926 and a talkie called The Bat Whispers in 1930. It stars Agnes Moorehead, Vincent Price, Gavin Gordon, John Sutton and Lenita Lane. Music is by Louis Forbes and photography by Joseph F. Biroc.
Famous mystery writer Cornelia Van Gorder (Moorehead) rents "The Oaks" mansion for the summer, just at the time a murderer known as "The Bat" is back terrorising the town. During this particular night, a number of characters have a vested reason for being at "The Oaks", not least "The Bat" himself....
Given the films title and the presence of Vincent Price, one is automatically drawn into thinking this is a horror film. It's not. In fact Price, in spite of being the main face on many DVD covers, isn't actually the main character in the film. This is a dark house mystery-who done it?-type movie, set in one of those creaky houses with an eerie stair case, secret rooms and things that go bump in the night. The emphasis is on B movie fun with some twists and cheap shocks dotted throughout, while the cast, wonderfully led by a correctly over the top Moorehead, deliver the requisite performances to make such a production more entertaining than not. Clocking in at just 80 minutes, film doesn't have time to get bogged down with pointless filler, and director Wilbur neatly keeps the audience guessing as to the identity of the steel clawed killer.
No great shakes in the pantheon of old dark house thrillers, it is however a film worthy of that once only viewing. 6/10