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"Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

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"Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

Old 09-25-11, 06:32 PM
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"Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28






Burn, Witch, Burn (1962)



Selected by NoirFan



IMDB ENTRY

NETFLIX WATCH INSTANTLY

These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET.

MAIN THREAD | LIST THREAD

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.

Spoiler tags are unnecessary in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF SPOILERS.

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Old 10-22-11, 03:11 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

If anyone would like a link to the commentary track Richard Matheson recorded for the laserdisc release, shoot me a PM.
Old 10-28-11, 10:31 AM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

Thanks for that link NoirFan! I plan to re-watch it with that commentary later today.

Finished the film early this morning and really enjoyed it. You're right NoirFan, definitely made me think of Night of the Demon. Coincidentally, I received that DVD in the mail yesterday. Amazon was kind enough to put it in my GoldBox the other day.

Atmospheric, well acted, and absolutely wonderfully shot; it kept me on the edge of my seat and makes me really looking forward to re-visiting it tonight. Then perhaps I'll follow it up with Night/Curse of the Demon.

Edit to add: The more I think about it the more I think this may be the best film I've seen all month.

Last edited by Trevor; 10-28-11 at 10:36 AM. Reason: add last line
Old 10-28-11, 01:25 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

The novel on which BURN, WITCH, BURN was based, "Conjure Wife," by Fritz Leiber, was earlier filmed by Hollywood in 1943 as WEIRD WOMAN, which is on the Inner Sanctum Mysteries box set, all of which I viewed for this challenge.The subject of academic politics (with a psychological twist) is an unusual one for a low-budget "horror" film that's only 63 min. long and done at Universal in the 1940s, with Lon Chaney Jr. as the star. I don't recall much about the English film or how much actual supernatural material, if any, was in it or how much it probed into academic circles. There's no "real" supernatural material in WEIRD WOMAN.

Here's my blurb on it from my post on the List Thread:

Oct. 2, 2011
5. WEIRD WOMAN (1944/U.S., 63 min., b&w, psychological horror/Universal) DVD (Inner Sanctum Mysteries box set)
Dir.: Reginald LeBorg. Stars: Lon Chaney Jr., Evelyn Ankers. Pretty wild look at academic politics on a sprawling campus after a celebrated ethnologist brings back a wife from “the islands” (presumably Hawaii) whose “jungle” voodoo is ridiculed by everyone—but then horrible things begin to happen. Five interesting women characters played by five interesting actresses in a screenplay written by a woman. Three of them have the hots for the “brilliant” and “dynamic” Chaney, which is kind of puzzling. Based on Fritz Leiber's "Conjure Wife," which was later made in England as BURN, WITCH, BURN! (1962).
I found it amusing to see how the campus in the film deals with behavior that would today be characterized as "workplace violence" and "sexual harassment," but which seemed pretty normal back then.
Old 10-28-11, 01:58 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Edit to add: The more I think about it the more I think this may be the best film I've seen all month.
I just logged on to say that Burn, Witch, Burn is the best film I've seen all month. Excellent subset inclusion. It's amazing this film isn't more widely known. Good taste in films there, NoirFan.

Originally Posted by Ash Ketchum View Post
...was earlier filmed by Hollywood in 1943 as WEIRD WOMAN, which is on the Inner Sanctum Mysteries box set...
I definitely have to watch Weird Woman off my Inner Sanctum set this weekend. Thanks for pointing this out. On the face of it Weird Woman looked like a weaker inclusion in that set.
Old 10-28-11, 02:29 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

Originally Posted by Undeadcow View Post
Good taste in films there, NoirFan.

I definitely have to watch Weird Woman off my Inner Sanctum set this weekend. Thanks for pointing this out.
Ditto ditto.
Old 10-28-11, 05:33 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

Burn, Witch, Burn/ Night of the Eagle is one of the few repeats I've watched from my list last year. I would have watched it anyway even if it hadn't been on the subset because it really is an unknown gem and one of my all-time favorite horror films. This really should be mandatory viewing for film directors today who want to know how to make a creepily atmospheric horror film with virtually no makeup or flashy FX. My only complaint about the film, a faint one, is the abruptness of the ending.

One sad note: Peter Wyngarde who played Norman needed a real-life Tansy to protect him. He damaged his career through a mix of alcoholism and an arrest for cruising guys in the loo, which is a shame because he is really good in this as a rationalist who becomes a believer in magic.

Last edited by Gobear; 10-28-11 at 05:41 PM.
Old 10-28-11, 06:10 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

It's too bad Kathleen Byron didn't have more to do, as she proved herself to be a superb actress in several Powell/Pressberger films. One barely even notices her in this movie. I thought the giant eagle, which could have been completely laughable, was actually relatively convincing. I plan on watching the commentary tomorrow. Earlier this month, while watching Tod Browning's The Devil Doll (1936), I noticed that it was based on a book entitled Burn, Witch, Burn!.
Old 10-28-11, 10:19 PM
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Re: "Burn, Witch, Burn" Reviews/Discussion - 2011 Horror Challenge: Day 28

I was quite surprised that Burn, Witch, Burn was as good as it was. As others have mentioned, it reminded me a lot of Curse of the Demon, but that could have been just because both films were set in England, were shot in black and white, and had some sort of supernatural basis. I won't go as far as Trevor and Undeadcow and say that this was my favorite FTV of this year's Challenge, but it was mighty tasty.

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