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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Cropsy (reissue title)" )

 

directed by Tony Maylam
US/Canada 1981

 

Although Harvey Weinstein claims he had the idea for THE BURNING before FRIDAY THE 13TH, the result is a more polished retread as young campers and their counselors pay the price for an accident that left Cropsy the camp janitor burned beyond recognition and out for revenge with a pair of shears. Like FRIDAY THE 13TH, THE BURNING had its gory Tom Savini make-up effects cut for an R-rating and the resulting film was rather innocuous though it started to gain a cult following once viewers became aware of uncut releases abroad. Initially released in the US as a cut, R-rated, fullframe release on videotape from Thorn/EMI, THE BURNING (the first Miramax production and the feature debuts of Holly Hunter, Jason Alexander, and Fisher Stevens) and then in a plethora of European tape and DVD release of varying degrees of completeness and varying quality, THE BURNING was not seen uncut legitimately in the United States until MGM released an unmatted Amazon.com exclusive VHS that sold out quickly. What distinguishes the film from many of its slasher ilk is the professional direction from Tony Maylam (hired after the Weinstein's saw his Genesis concert film), the cinematography of DP Harvey Harrison (Nicolas Roeg's THE WITCHES, second unit on GOLDENEYE), Rick Wakeman's electronic score (although the best tracks were written solely for the soundtrack album), and the F13-topping gore and savagery of the kills of characters generally more likable than those of post-SCREAM recursive slashers and simple retreads.

Eric Cotenas

Poster

Theatrical Release: 8 May 1981

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DVD Review: MGM - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

DVD Box Cover

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Distribution

MGM

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:31:18
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.98 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 mono)
Subtitles English, Spanish, French, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Commentary by Director Tony Maylam and Film Journalist Alan Jones
• Blood 'n Fire Memories (Tom Savini featurette)
• Photo Gallery
• Theatrical Trailer

DVD Release Date: September 11th, 2007
Amaray

Chapters 20

 

Comments:

Although the cover lists an R-rating, this is the unrated version. MGM's DVD is sourced from a new HD transfer which had been seen previously on cable. Despite the budget price of the disc, it is a dual-layered disc with a bitrate of 7.98 that handles the dark night scenes and the somewhat soft day scenes (British DP Harvey Harrison was one of the few who did not go overboard with the gauzy look during the eighties which could have led to smearing at a lower bitrate).

Although the menus and cover art are rather unattractive and do not really sell the film for what it is, the commentary by Tony Maylam (interviewed by Alan Jones) is informative as is the featurette with make-up effects designer Tom Savini which includes on-set video footage of the shooting of the effects.

 - Eric Cotenas

 


DVD Menus
 

 


Screen Captures


Jason Alexander (left) and Fisher Stevens (right) in their feature film debuts.

 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

 

 


DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution

MGM

Region 1 - NTSC




 

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