Blu-Ray Review: The Burning (Collector’s Edition)

Published on July 29th, 2013 in: Blu-Ray, Current Faves, DVD/Blu-Ray Reviews, Horror, Movie Reviews, Movies, Retrovirus, Reviews |

By Brad Henderson


There are a plethora of slashers from the ’80s, and a few stand out for numerous reasons. Some of these films have an iconic killer or a bizarre story line; some may have pretty sweet kills, or they may be so silly it’s funny. The Burning has none of these attributes, but it’s still awesome.

When I use to visit my grandmother in Ohio, there was a store called Video Time, and I would spend hours there. As soon as I entered the store, I would turn to the right (where the horror section was) and spend an hour picking out videos. Now, this wasn’t your run-of-the-mill dingy horror section in the back of your local mom and pop place; this was a massive wall filled to the brim. They must have had over 500 titles, ranging from Alien Dead to The Zero Boys; among all these, they had just about every slasher flick from the ’80s. Every year we would visit Ohio for about two to three weeks during the summer, and I would go to Video Time every two to three days. Everyone else crashed early, and I would stay up all hours of the night watching movies

On one of those days, I was aimlessly perusing the dusty shelves, unable to make up my mind, when something caught my eye. I saw a man and a woman kissing on the front (that meant sex) and someone with raised garden sheers (that meant death) above them. Now, in this video store they didn’t put the movie behind the box; instead they had a nail under the cover box with a small tag showing the title. I grabbed it and then went to the checkout counter and the clerk look down at what I handed him. That tag read The Burning, and that night I viewed it for the first, but not the last, time.

The Burning was in the latest batch of releases from Scream Factory this past month. Scream Factory is going through a long list of flicks to release. Some are more popular than others, and some are more obscure. Most of the horror geeks will remember that The Burning wasn’t easy to find a few years ago. It existed only on VHS for a long time and eventually, a bootleg DVD with the uncut version surfaced. In 2007 MGM released it on DVD, and now Scream Factory is bringing us the Blu-Ray and the best version out there to date.

As redundant as it can be to keep saying this, the transfers that Scream Factory does for their Blu-rays are impeccable, and I really don’t think we will get anything less than that in the future. They really capture the look and sound of this film. The most impressive thing about the Blu-Ray is the sound and the soundtrack itself. Once the score starts, it doesn’t stop; it is in your head, and you can’t get it out. Scream Factory knows this, so they didn’t let up once that music hits. (ctually, it sounds like they made it a little louder than they should have or else I had my surround sound up a little too high.) I really did get into it. Also, the raft scene has never looked or has heard any better than this.

The special features are quite entertaining, but they are all mostly from the old DVD. There is one new interview with Lou David (Cropsey). To be honest, it is a little boring. Other than that, the special features are really fun and mostly all converted to HD. I think the one with Tom Savini is probably the best on there because he has some fascinating stories on how and why he did the job.

So sit down and turn out all your lights. Just hope that Cropsey doesn’t come and get you. He’s out there, watching and waiting. So don’t look; he’ll see you. Don’t breathe; he’ll hear you. Don’t move; you’re dead!

The Burning (Collector’s Edition) was released by Scream Factory on May 21.

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