Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside

The Burning (1981) Film Review

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Image result for the burning shout factoryOVERVIEW

The Burning was released after “Halloween” and before “Friday the 13th and later on “A Nightmare on Elm Street” it boasts a progressive and depressingly creepy score, clever camerawork and amazing gore effects by Tom Saini and is in some ways a “sleeper” movie not as well-known as the latter title but gaining a cult following in the process.


The plot is a revenge story with a prank by campers goes seriously wrong and out of control leaving the infamous camper caretaker with burns to all of his body. The plot pushes on to him coming out of hospital glad in black and wanting revenge gone a the big city streets and depressing back alleys and then we go to another camp near were the incident happened.

The plot in many way set up characters that would be re-used  in the genre, you have the staple bully and womaniser, the nerdy misfit, the budding romances between the camp overseers and the typical antics of all the teenagers (some played  by adults) in the movies. In my opinion the pacing is really good, the photography is amazing and by the time you get to the third act of the movie you will not be disappointed.

Image result for the burning shout factory image


 The Special make-up and gore effects were created by Tom Savini these effects still hold up today in their intensity and overtness something I think the director was going for in this one, cleverly shot and expertly edited.  I viewed this movie in HD (1080p 24fps) on Blu-ray by Shout! Factory the picture was clear and colours well balanced (although a tad soft in places) with a steady thumping score.


This is a very enjoyable early slasher movies that would be staple of the eighties horror/slasher sub-genre boasting good performances, a creepy score, and interesting spin on the revenge story and impressive effects and camera work. Recommended.


Author: Paul Isaacs

Paul was branded as a “naughty & difficult child” at school. He was classically autistic and non-verbal due to speech articulation difficulties. He had complex sensory issues and appeared both deaf and blind. He gained functional speech around the age of 7 or 8 years old. He went through the mainstream school system with no additional help or recognition of his autism. Consequently, he did not achieve his academic or his social potential and had very low self-esteem. At age 11, Paul was referred to the children’s mental health service with childhood depression where he was regarded as “developmentally underage” and having speech problems. As an adult, Paul had a string of unsuccessful jobs, and his mental health suffered. He developed both Borderline and Schizotypal Personality Disorders in early 2007. He was referred to mental health services and misdiagnosed with “Asperger traits with a complex personality”, which did not satisfy Paul or his family. A local autism organisation put Paul in touch with an experienced psychiatrist, who diagnosed him with Autism at 24 years old. In 2012 Paul was also diagnosed with Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome by an Irlen Consultant who confirmed that he also had face, object and meaning blindness – conditions which Paul describes eloquently in his speeches and training sessions. He also has dyslexia, dyscalculia and also a dissociative disorder. Having started working as an local autism organisation as a public speaker in 2010, Paul joined their mission to promote autism awareness. His hope is that others will not have to suffer as he did. Now also a core member of our Training Team, Paul continues to enhance true understanding of autism at every opportunity. Paul has released and published 5 books on the subject of autism published by Chipmunka publishing and has contributed to other books too. Having overcome many challenges to achieve the success that he now enjoys, Paul’s message is that Autism is a complex mix of ability and disability. He firmly believes that every Autistic person should have the opportunity to reach their potential and be regarded as a valued member of society. Apart from autism related blogs Paul also write about movies, fashion, art and anything that is of interest. As of August 2015 Paul now works as a freelance speaker, training and consultant in and around the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire area. If you are interested please contact him via email at

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