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Burke & Hare (Remastered Edition) [Blu-ray]

2.6 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

When a man in their Edinburgh boarding house dies, poor Irish immigrants Burke (Derren Nesbitt) and Hare (Glynn Edwards) discover they can make good money by supplying corpses for scientific study to a doctor at the university medical school. Inconvenienced by the lack of available cadavers, the cunning pair soon turns to murder to maintain their revenue stream. Vernon Sewell (Ghost Ship, The Blood Beast Terror) directs this classic horror film with a dose of dark comedy. Newly remastered in HD and in it s original aspect ratio for the first time. First time ever on Blu-ray!

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Derren Nesbitt, Glynn Edwards
  • Directors: Vernon Sewell
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Kino Lorber films
  • DVD Release Date: July 17, 2012
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007UQ8IP6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #134,317 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Amazon Video
I went into this film expecting some real early 70s British trash, along the lines of "Virgin Witch" or "Horror Hospital" (which is delightful trash, but trash). Instead I found a faintly serious, highly droll take on the Burke and Hare story, that may be the best acted rubbish film of its decade. The cast ranges from Royal Shakespeare Company staple Harry Andrews to Benny Hill stooge Bob Todd, but everyone is uniformly good. Derren Nesbitt plays a somewhat naive Burke, while Glynn Edwards channels Robert Newton as Long John Silver as Hare. Their scenes together are terrific. Harry Andrews plays Dr. Knox, and he gives it his all, even though the film was probably nothing more than a bit of lolly to augment his lower-paying stage work. Director Vernon Sewell, nobody's candidate for great British filmmaker, does very well here, emphasizing the humor without totally burlesquing things. And somehow, the inane rock theme song fits perfectly. If you are expecting a thoughtful treatise on the historic Burke and Hare, you'd better look elsewhere. But if you want a freewheeling, historical melodrama that has some genuinely funny moments and a lot of boobies thrown in for good measure, this is the ticket. Think Hammer meets Tom Jones.
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Format: Blu-ray
Throughout the seventies, many British studios tried to compete with Hammer Films in the Horror genre output and few succeeded. Here we have a rare British title , Director Vernon Sewell's 'BURKE AND HARE'- 1972, which received limited distribution in the states and appeared in mom and pop video stores in the eighties via a muddy VHS transfer. The story of grave robbers doing murderous business with surgeons in 1800's Edinburgh had been filmed many times before and because it was the seventies , this version contains dark and crude sexual humor taking place in brothels and pubs making it hard to classify it as a Horror film or an exploitation comedy. It is peppered with many familiar British actors : Harry Andrews as Dr. Knox who seems to be slumming it, the always excellent Derren Nesbitt in a front and center role for once , an unrecognizable Yootha Joyce as Burke's Sweeney Todd/Mrs. Lovett-like unpleasant wife, and as the gorgeous brothel trollops ,Francoise Pascal and a blink or you'll miss cameo by Yutte Stensgaard who played Mircalla/Millarca Karnstein in Director Jimmy Sangster's 'LUST FOR A VAMPIRE'- 1970 who gave that role an underrated performance. Director Sewell directs the proceedings in a straight forward manner having come off the set of the much better guilty pleasure 'THE BLOOD BEAST TERROR' aka 'THE VAMPIRE BEAST CRAVES BLOOD'-1971 also available from Redemption Films in Blu-Ray or DVD. The Blu-Ray is a nice clear transfer in its correct 1.66 aspect ratio showing off the production design giving a you are there feel to the dirty alleyways and interior hovels enhancing the crisp cinematography by Desmond Dickinson although the negative fluctuates with bluish blemishes and brownish tones.Read more ›
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Format: Amazon Video
This was an interesting story. It was about two people that got involved in the body selling trade that went on in the early 1800's. This was at the time a common way that doctors could gain access to bodies for study in anatomy schools. Things like this actually happened. The two men, Burke and Hare, took things further and committed murder to get bodies and make money. This movie is based on actual events.

(The Burke and Hare murders (also known as the West Port murders) were a series of murders committed in Edinburgh, Scotland over a period of about ten months in 1828. The killings were attributed to Irish immigrants William Burke and William Hare, who sold the corpses of their 16 victims to Doctor Robert Knox as dissection material for his well-attended anatomy lectures. Burke and Hare's accomplices were Burke's mistress, Helen McDougal, and Hare's wife, Margaret Laird.[1] From their method of killing their victims came the word "burking", meaning to smother and compress the chest of a murder victim, and a derived meaning, to suppress something quietly.) Taken from Wikipedia
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Highly entertaining, and bizarrely directed. Basically it is paced and cued as though it was a comedy, but all the events are the actual terrifying dark happenings of Burke & Hare. It's utterly weird to hear a "boinnnng" musical note when someone is being hideously murdered.

Lots of topless action and simulated vigorous (and often very amusing sex) if that floats your boat, but in standard British style almost no gore. Plenty of murders, however.

Despite this, I recommend it wholeheartedly. Actually of all the numerous Burke & Hare versions & knock-offs I've seen, this is my second favorite, even surpassing the Peter Cushing take in Flesh & the Fiends. The best, of course, is still Val Lewton's The Body Snatchers, which is a Boris Karloff showcase and also has Bela Lugosi (though in only a small role).
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Gave it a shot just due to Redemption promoting it - but there are other more current films out there if you like the "Burking" films (which I do) and this is a good example of some old drive-in fare films .... but will just bore you, really. Just not a film that really would have had a fan or a cult base at any stage and was one of the types that probably (and ain't changed much)only got folks in due to a bit of partial nudity posters and promo art - then figured story development no longer had importance.
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Burke & Hare (Remastered Edition) [Blu-ray]
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