Burial Ground (Italian Zombie Splatter Depravity)


Now in the “completely bugged out” category of Cinema, Andrea Bianchi’s Burial Ground returns to amaze us all in the definitive version compliments of our friends at Severin Films. This film has confused and amused us for decades since its release in 1983 by Motion Picture Marketing and subsequent VHS edition by the legendary Vestron Video. Does it hold up in 2024? Let’s find out. A cadre of the wealthy elites have been summoned to a remote villa by a very strange professor who in the beginning of the film tells the zombies that are about to devour him that he’s their friend. After a night of bedroom shenanigans punctuated by the appearance of a very strange little boy (the immortal Peter Bark,) a teeming mass of the rotting undead storm the villa in pursuit of fresh flesh.


Bianchi’s film is unusual in the sense that it combines disgusting violence (beheadings, crucifixion and the like) with sleazy sex and a hint of incest. Shot on 16mm and blown up to 35, this low budget romp is a lot of fun if you’re up to the challenge and willing to submit your brain at the door. The score is a confusing mix of jazz, orchestral maneuvers and a hint of white noise electronics that merely adds to the sense of chaos that permeates the whole film. What starts off as a goofy zombie romp becomes unexpectedly tense and discomforting by the hour mark. By the end of the film, you’ve been swept up in the spell and everything hits you like a full frontal assault. Severin Films have outdone themselves with this, the definitive release of Burial Ground. Utilizing the same scan used by 88 Films for their release in the UK, this disc is a Godsend for those who are used to watching this on either the murky Vestron VHS or the botched Media Blasters DVD. While this is never going to look like a million bucks, the DNR is kept to a minimum and the muted color scheme looks more like a directorial decision than a careless transfer. All in all, a top job by Severin. Extras are too plentiful to mention, with two commentaries and a slew of interviews and featurettes. This will definitely keep you awake all night playing around. If you’re a fan of Italian cheese and their distinct brand of PastaLand Zombie Splatter, Burial Ground is your ticket to a good time. Be sure to pick this up from the Severin site, which includes several choice touches including a very awesome pillowcase that more than likely smells of death. Proceed with no caution at all.


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Written by David, Comptroller of Your Last Scrap of Existence

Burial Ground (2024 on Blu-ray)
Director: Andrea Bianchi
Distributor: Severin Films
4.9 / 5