The Burning (1981)

R   |    |  Horror


The Burning (1981) Poster

A former summer camp caretaker, horribly burned from a prank gone wrong, lurks around an upstate New York summer camp bent on killing the teenagers responsible for his disfigurement.


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9 May 2013 | ersinkdotcom
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| Shout! Factory gives summer camp slasher flick "The Burning" the hi-def treatment
I believe I've found what must be the seminal summer camp slasher film of the 1980s. It captures every element of the decade's obsession with movies like "Friday the 13th" and "Meatballs" and puts them in one package. Shout! Factory has scored again with their Blu-ray release of "The Burning."

The caretaker of a summer camp is burned alive and left deformed after a prank goes wrong. Years later, he's released from the hospital and returns to the area where the accident occurred. A new group of campers have arrived for the summer and he has horrific plans for them. Hedge clippers in hand, the caretaker begins his reign of terror on the counselors and attendees.

"The Burning" has the raunchy toilet humor of "Meatballs" mixed with everything you came to expect from slasher films like "Friday the 13th" and "Sleepaway Camp." You have nice girls making bad decisions by hooking up with bad guys. Unfortunately, the killer sees all and punishes them for their perverse deeds.

I always thought the killer in "Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning" was the first to utilize hedge clippers. I was very wrong, as you can see in "The Burning." It's obvious the psycho in "A New Beginning" took inspiration from the crazy caretaker.

It's unbelievable how many big names are attached to "The Burning." Harvey Weinstein created and co-wrote the story. Bob Weinstein co-wrote the screenplay. Special Make-up Artist Tom Savini returns to camp for a second time after his classic work on "Friday the 13th." His handiwork keeps the blood flowing efficiently.

Brian Backer plays a character more annoying than the one he did in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High." Jason Alexander (yes, George Costanza) portrays a sporty and popular high schooler. He has a full head of hair and doesn't wear glasses. Holly Hunter can be seen briefly as a camper. She looks like she was maybe 13 years old.

"The Burning" is another one of those cult classics many people forget about in the shadow of "Friday the 13th." If you're a fan of 1980s slasher movies, it's a must-own.

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