I don't particularly like old movies but this one is very well-acted and the plot golden until about 3/4 of the way through when it begins to dissolve into hackneyed malarkey.
In the interim it's a solid cast of supporting actors around the two main protagonists Melvyn Douglas and Lionel Antwill, and the token superstar Fay Wray (King Kong), who stars but in a supporting role.
This is hardly horror in the modern sense but does serve well as a mystery with science fiction and paranormal (psychic vampirism) elements interjected. Much of the action is in the dialogue and the first attack by the "vampire bat" doesn't happen until almost 20 minutes in with the attacker appearing off camera.
It's worth a watch for nostalgic sake but quite disappointing in the traditional sense of vampire flicks. Then again, it is an 80-year-old movie.
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|The New York Times, January 23, 1933|
|Sarasota Herald-Tribune, June 20, 1933|