World War II is an underused setting for terror. Stories set in that era tend to focus on the occult. Burial It takes place in 1945 after the fall of Berlin. A group of Russian soldiers is tasked with transporting a mysterious package to Stalin. Along the way they meet German soldiers who have their own ideas about the surrender.
Burial he ruins one of his biggest surprises before the movie even begins. The synopsis gleefully states that the group has been tasked with delivering Hitler’s remains. For those who didn’t read the film’s log line, it is casually stated in conversation about ten minutes into the film. He then becomes little more than a prop until he takes center stage an hour or so later.
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Actually, this would not be that important since it is a unique story. After all, there aren’t many plots about two opposing factors fighting over the dead body of Hitler. the matter in Burial is the mystery that surrounds the situation. The soldiers wonder why their load must be buried every night. This gives the feeling that the audience is one step ahead of the script.
It’s not uncommon for people who watch horror movies to know more than the cast, but where the movie crosses the line is in revealing what’s in the box. The camera work and the reactions of the characters in the room do a great job of creating suspense. The problem is that the suspense hinges on not knowing what’s in the box. The end result is a potentially great scene that feels flat.
At this point, the actual action in Burial It begins with the Germans and Russians fighting over the dead body of Hitler. The gunfights are exciting and while there’s little character development, some of them still manage to make an impression. The ending is a bit too shocking for its own good, but it will certainly catch anyone who sees it off guard.
Writer-director Ben Parker masterfully oscillates between war-story horrors and straight-up horror. Until the revelation Burial he is constantly playing with the expectations of the audience. That the psychological horror aspects end up being an end to a medium doesn’t detract from great imagery. The atmosphere is reminiscent of moody genre fare.
The more emotional aspects do not have the same seriousness. There are some significant monologues, but they don’t have a lasting impact. Ultimately, the story about groups fighting over what to do with Hitler’s remains is interesting enough. Burial it simply tries to do more than is necessary.
Burial opens in select theaters and On Demand September 2
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