Packed with the cream of British comedy talent.

A quote used on the DVD cover for Burke and Hare. Unfortunately, none of the talent were using it, maybe in fear of it running out. For Simon Pegg, I sadly think that time has passed (as a big Spaced fan this is very sad, but I saw Hot Fuzz, twice). I notice Nick Frost wasn’t in this, maybe he thought it beneath him, and took a lead from David Tennant, who supposedly pulled out of a title role.

To be honest, I should have walked away the moment Ronnie Corbett walked on screen.

DVD Cover Burke & Hare

Part of the trouble with this is that it was billed as dark comedy and the set guys did a great job on creating an atmospheric setting. It looked like dark comedy, It was billed as a dark comedy. When Simon Pegg interviewed about it, he called it a dark comedy. It was not a dark comedy. Pegg and Serkis play the lead roles as blundering idiots. There is nothing sinister or clever about them to make this work as a dark comedy. Their motives are mere opportunism and need of money. For this to work they need to be likeable, which they are not. Pegg’s character does it for a girl. Trying to insert a romantic comedy plot into this diverted a lot away from the actual story, and meant that Burke and Hare did very little actual body finding/acquiring. I think Simon Pegg just fancied Isla Fisher.

If it was a dark comedy, why did one of the militia feel the need to fall over in every scene in a comedy manner? The one that wasn’t Corbett or Reece Shearsmith. In a grave, fainting at any given opportunity, just generally throwing himself on the floor when he had nothing to say. Everytime he was on screen. From what I can tell, the Hammer Horror version was less cheesy. The best think you can do with this film is play a drinking game with “spot the cameo”. Bill Bailey, Christopher Lee, Stephen Merchant, Reece Shearsmith, Paul Whitehouse and Michael Winner to name a few.

As with all of Simon Pegg’s recent movies, I go into them with hope, but end up simply bored. I really hope “Paul” is better, but I may end up giving it a miss to preserve the memory of Spaced and Shaun of the Dead.

1 Stolen Cadaver out of 5.

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Posted in Blog, reviews
2 comments on “Packed with the cream of British comedy talent.
  1. Bouncybhall says:

    I enjoyed parts of Burke and Hare – but as a fan of both John Landis movies AND Simon Pegg movies I felt the same disappointment as a paedophile who realised that he’d actually kidnapped an ugly dwarf…

    Paul was no better – given the talent involved I was expecting an extended Spaced-eqsue romp through sci-fi movie references with the added weight of cameo roles. Instead it felt like the early sparks had fizzed out. I now wonder if the actual talent lies with Edgar Wright – loved his adaptation of Scott Pilgrim.

    How To Lose Friends and Alienate People, Run Fatboy Run and others prove that it takes more than Pegg being an out-of-place British guy to be funny and the only film he’s involved with that I have ANY interest in at all is the Tintin movie, and that’s nothing to do with any actor’s involvement. I’d be excited if someone had cut out pictures from the original books and just held them up to the camera.

    • I didn’t count How to lose friends and Run Fatboy as I didn’t think that Pegg had creative involvement with them, just an actor. Run Fatboy was the best of the bunch though.
      Looks like I’ll be missing Paul as well then. Shame, as I thought he could really shine on something like that.
      I liked Scott Pilgrim too, did the books justice very well. It does look like that’s where the talent lied.

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