HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Human Voice, The
Guns Akimbo
Being a Human Person
Giants and Toys
Millionaires Express
Bringing Up Baby
World to Come, The
Air Conditioner
Fear and Loathing in Aspen
Kandisha
Riders of Justice
Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki, The
For Those Who Think Young
Justice League: War
Fuzzy Pink Nightgown, The
Plurality
Scooby-Doo! Moon Monster Madness
Night of the Sharks
Werewolves Within
Honeymoon
King and Four Queens, The
Stray Dolls
Diana's Wedding
Deerskin
Toll, The
Two of Us
Nowhere Special
Rainbow Jacket, The
Crazy Samurai: 400 vs 1
First Cow
Undiscovered Tomb
Being Frank
Occupation: Rainfall
Jeanette: The Childhood of Joan of Arc
Pariah
Weapon, The
Godzilla vs. Kong
Love and Monsters
Tove
Young Wives' Tale
   
 
Newest Articles
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
   
 
  Burke and Hare Money In Death
Year: 1972
Director: Vernon Sewell
Stars: Derren Nesbitt, Harry Andrews, Glynn Edwards, Yootha Joyce, Françoise Pascal, Yutte Stensgaard, Robin Hawdon, Alan Tucker, Dee Shenderey, Joan Carol, Paul Greaves, David Pugh, James Hayter, Thomas Heathcoate, Duncan Lamont, Katya Wyeth, Bob Todd, Reg Lye
Genre: Horror, HistoricalBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Edinburgh in the 1820s and two ne'erdowells, Burke (Derren Nesbitt) and Hare (Glynn Edwards), are living in squalor with their wives when they hear of a way of making easy money. When an elderly man in the boarding house they stay in expires, they are given the job of taking the body to the undertaker, but Burke has an idea, to take the corpse to the city's medical college. This is because the doctors there pay a handsome fee for fresh bodies for dissection and study, and their students can use them as well, so after making an enquiry the two men have successfully completed a transaction - not for the last time.

The story of Burke and Hare is, for some reason, a remarkably popular one in film and television, with a version of the true, 19th century events popping up on screens large and small almost every decade. The best of these is undoubtedly the Val Lewton B-movie The Body Snatcher, but is it significant that this one sticks least closely to the facts? Compare it with this 1972 account, which adheres to the basic storyline as it happened, but to lesser effect, neither as witty or as atmospheric as the previous 1940s classic, perhaps because here the goal is to make a comedy horror.

With the result that this Burke and Hare is more like a British sex comedy strain of the tale, as half the running time seems to be taken up with the comings and goings in a local brothel, a great opportunity, so the filmmakers apparently thought, to spice up their production with plentiful female nudity. Most of that nakedness is courtesy of imported French star Françoise Pascal as a whore who finds love with a naive medical student and leads, we eventually find out, to the bad guys' downfall, although imported Danish star Yutte Stensgaard takes off her clothes as well.

Every Burke and Hare needs their Doctor Knox, or they would be out of business, so step forward Harry Andrews sporting a pair of spectacles with one black lens and a Scottish accent to cover that role. There are quite a few dodgy accents here, actually, from Nesbitt's sing-song Irish to Stensgaard's broad burr, although to be fair she might have been dubbed, just not dubbed by anybody from Edinburgh, or indeed Britain by the sounds of it. Pascal gets to keep her French accent, however, even if her real life equivalent was presumably from Scotland.

Anyway, Knox is only too happy to hand over cash to the evildoers without asking any questions, and this is to their benefit as this is one of the only renderings of their story that sees them as significantly financially better off after their misdeeds allow the pounds, shillings and pence to flow into their pockets. The idea that this is all a bit of a giggle is somewhat at odds with a film that portrays wifebeating and murder, and they don't sit too comfortably with the tarnished charm of the bodysnatchers. If you know anything of the actual events, you can spot the references to them, but it needn't harm your enjoyment if you don't as this does have a certain energy about its dodgy dealings that help it through its lame humour and bloodless nastiness. Also, the theme song is by The Scaffold of "Lily the Pink" fame, which sounds more like Chas and Dave: why sing a song about this famous Scottish crime spree in a Cockney accent? Particularly when they're from Liverpool?
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4411 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: