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Kaí (Gael Garcia Bernal), a mysterious man who emerges from the Argentinean rainforest to rescue Vania, (Alice Braga) the beautiful and spirited daughter of a poor farmer who is murdered by mercenaries who requisition his property after he refuses to sign it over to them.


With a lusciously detailed image The Burning is filled with crisp edges and lots of vivid bright colours. The image is boosted with plenty of natural sunlight and some great lighting choices and even though the darker scenes looses some intensity from time to time the visuals still remain bold and sharp.

The presentation is a little on the gritty side but it adds to the more real world style of the film and can make for quite the stand out image in the deep black night, lit by orange firelight. At its best the image is full of life and leaps off of the screen with a fine use of colour, light and shadow, at its worst it sits somewhere in the bland scale that a deep forest with very little light getting in often generates. This loses the image a fair bit of pop for little stints but detail still remains pretty sharp edged and textured.

Colours dance between burnt oranges and autumnal greens and browns given a warm rusty appearance  that's heavy black levels make everything all the more striking. Backgrounds are not quite as sharp as the characters filling the foregrounds but there's still a sense of the vastness with the depth of the image and of course the enclosed spaces we often find ourselves in.


Subtle and mysterious the charismatic audio design here immediately generates an uneasy mood. Chirping bugs, a soft unravelling score and the crackling sound of burnt wood and a largely silent jungle makes every sound, however minimal seem almost like a character in the film.

Dialogue is soft and subtle, with many of the cast talking in hushed voices. The biggest rises are with the score as it hits emotional peaks in key dramatic moments or particularly well handled darker turns or tense moments of action but generally speaking The Burning remains simple and atmospheric in all the right ways.


The Making of (16:17 HD) bigs up the action side of the film initially but soon levels off and becomes a much more in tune set of interviews and on set footage.


The Burning is a slow and carefully unravelling thriller with a bit of action and a lot depth. It's a very quiet film but quiet in a way that lures you in and it's very effective because when it bites, you feel it in ways most more in your face actioners tend to miss. The film's careful construction within its forest setting looks and sounds fantastic in HD and the use of open areas and confined space really works with the bright sunlight.

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