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Burke and Hare 2010

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A black comedy about two 19th century grave robbers who find a lucrative business providing cadavers for an Edinburgh medical school.

Starring:
Christopher Lee, Andy Serkis
Rental Formats:
DVD, Blu-ray

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 27 minutes
Starring Christopher Lee, Andy Serkis, Tim Curry, Pollyanna McIntosh, Isla Fisher, Jessica Hynes, Simon Pegg, Tom Wilkinson, Jenny Agutter, Bill Bailey
Director John Landis
Genres Comedy, Horror, Thriller
Studio ENTERTAINMENT IN VIDEO
Rental release 21 February 2011
Main languages English
Hearing impaired subtitles English
Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 27 minutes
Starring Christopher Lee, Andy Serkis, Tim Curry, Pollyanna McIntosh, Isla Fisher, Jessica Hynes, Simon Pegg, Tom Wilkinson, Jenny Agutter, Bill Bailey
Director John Landis
Genres Comedy, Horror, Thriller
Studio ENTERTAINMENT IN VIDEO
Rental release 21 February 2011
Main languages English
Hearing impaired subtitles English

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
John Landis' Burke and Hare takes us back to Edinburgh in 1828, where life is cheap but the price skyrockets when you die. As Bill Bailey's genial hangman breezily fills us in on the historical background while he's preparing to execute an elderly and decrepit whore, it's the time of the Scottish Enlightenment and the city has become the medical capital of the world, but the path of scientific progress is hindered by the lack of fresh bodies to dissect. Things get even worse when Dr Alexander Monroe (Tim Curry) gets the monopoly on the bodies of the hanged, forcing Dr Robert Knox (Tom Wilkinson) to more drastic measures. Enter genial lowlife conmen Burke and Hare (Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis, both sporting credible Irish brogues) who, after failing miserably at grave robbing, decide to take a more hands on approach to the supply-and-demand problem...

The subject of many a horror film, Landis and the revived Ealing Studios take their lead more from the studio's classic black comedies like Kind Hearts and Coronets and The Ladykillers than Hammer (though Landis is enough of a buff to more than just doff his cap in their direction), updated with plenty of talk of business models and swipes at society's hypocrisy as our evil Laurel and Hardy ply their trade. Burke's romance with Isla Fisher's actress/working girl looking for a backer for her all-female version of MacBeth doesn't really add much to the mix beyond giving him the opportunity to fob off her queries about where he gets his money from with "I'm in surgical supplies," but the film is brisk and breezy enough to never outstay its welcome and manages to pull off turning a pair of `Irish psychopaths' into romantic heroes of a sort in a feelgood comedy.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
John Landis did his best in the 70/80ies. Here he's back, partially with his past talent, but not enough to turn this brilliant gothic subject into a memorable Landis film. Too bad, because the pieces were all there. It's just that he was not so good at putting them together well.
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Format: DVD
Having really enjoyed Paul The Movie, I found this mildly disappointing.

The plot is that the titular Burke and Hare are down on their luck in 19th century Edinburgh, United Kingdom, where a new law means that Dr Know cannot get cadavers for his anatomy class. Through a series of contrivances, our "heroes" wind up murdering people and selling their bodies before the law catches up with them.

The cast is strong: in addition to Simon Pegg, there is Tim Curry, Isla Fisher (who looks very hot), Bill Bailey, Hugh Bonneville, Ronnie Corbett, Stephen Merchant, Paul Whitehouse... you get the idea. Best of British.

There are two problems with this movie. The first is the "comedy" tag. There were instances where I smiled, but there were no belly laughs.

The second is the ending. Accepting that this is not a historically accurate film, the ending was disappointing because all of the worst villains got away whilst the "hero-villain" sacrificed himself for an ideal that never existed.

The sex scenes mean that this is unsuitable for children, but the characters don't have enough depth to generate the tension necessary to grip and adult. Ultimately this was an average film that you will watch once, and then never again.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I bought this film as I had rented it from my local Library when it was first released and I thoroughly enjoyed it, and as it was a good price I decided to add it to my rather large DVD collection. It a very dark but funny film, which, in my opinion is 'stolen' from its two leads, Andy Serkis and Simon Pegg by the late, great Ronnie Corbett. There's also a nice cameo for Bill Bailey.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Being fond of Simon pegg films I expected this to be of his normal calibre but was massively disappointed, to be honest the story never went anywhere Isla fisher was terrible in it, and Simon pegg just never roused any laughs I fell asleep near the end as it just wasn't funny!!!! wait till it comes out on t.v its not worth any amount of money massively disappointing.
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Format: DVD
A real mix of reviews for this and I think I'm somewhere in the middle.

It isn't 'outrageously funny' as it says on the case. I always think it's a bit of a mistake to big up films in this way, or well, anything really; just like someone I once worked with who kept on and on about how amazing looking her husband was. He wasn't. You set yourself up for a bit of a fall. 'Side-splittingly uproarious' is another I've seen. It wasn't.

This was a good fun 'romp' of a film; great cast, authentic looking sets and costumes and a lot of gruesome shennanigans thrown in for good measure. I've never been too sure of Simon Pegg as a film actor-I primarily remember him from Spaced and that seemed to fit him quite well-he always seems a little out of his depth on film, but he isn't bad. Andy Serkis too...hmmm...always thought he overacted a tad until I saw him in Little Dorrit where he was quite good, and he was actually pretty good in this too; well, he didn't annoy me like he did as Lumpy the Cook in King Kong...

It is a real who's who of British actors and I did like people such as Christopher Lee popping up and Ronnie Corbett. Tom Wilkinson and Hugh Bonneville were good too and Isla Fisher was pretty convincing seeing as the only thing I've seen her in was Home and Away about 100 years ago.

So, not bad at all - we did laugh out loud at some things and the 'bedroom' scene is pretty funny too. Well worth watching if you don't take it too seriously.
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