The Burning (1968)

 |  Short, Drama  |  July 1968 (UK)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.0/10 from 65 users  
Reviews: 1 user | 1 critic

A white South African is shocked on a weekly visit to her sister's farm.



, (short story)
0Check in
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Terminus (1961)
Short | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The movie follows the routine of an agitated train station - the Waterloo Station - making a brief yet important cultural portrait of the 1960's England, mixing reality and fiction.

Director: John Schlesinger
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A Martian is sentenced to visit earth to cure a selfish man.

Director: Wallett Waller
Stars: Charles Hawtrey, E. Holman Clark, Crissie Bell
Short | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Anthony Gilkison
Stars: Algernon Blackwood
Short | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  
Director: Anthony Gilkison
Stars: Algernon Blackwood
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A young girl (Amelia) is distressed and feeling guilty about losing the wings she was to wear in her school play. Then she notices an angel and follows the angel into a dark building. ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Mercedes Quadros, Míka van Bloemen, Helen Ulman
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young orphaned girl is sent to live with her uncle, but she is troubled by a shadowy figure that appears and disappears.

Director: James Hill
Stars: Sarah Hollis Andrews, Ronald Adam, Anthony McCaffery
Cross-Roads (1955)
Short | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A young man returns from the grave to avenge himself on an impresario who caused the death of his sister.

Director: John Fitchen
Stars: Christopher Lee, Ferdy Mayne, Mercy Haystead
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Things go terribly wrong for four youths, ejected from a London nightclub for rowdiness, after they decide to break into a Magic shop, where they tie up and terrorize the owner. They find ... See full summary »

Director: Gerry Levy
Stars: Warren Mitchell, John Malcolm, Ray Armstrong
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Radio personality Eammon Andrews shows a group of young female volunteers around the attractions of the Festival Of Britain.

Director: Edwin J. Fancey
Stars: Eamonn Andrews, Christine Forrest, Sonia Clark
Echo of Diana (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Joan Scott is distraught at the death of her husband in a plane crash. However, all is not as it seems. Joan has reason to believe that there is more to this than meets the eye and begins ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest Morris
Stars: Vincent Ball, Betty McDowall, Geoffrey Toone
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A reporter and his girlfriend--also a reporter--investigate threats against a retired army officer and discover that they're linked to a series of murders and a court-martial that occurred during the war.

Director: Terence Fisher
Stars: John Bentley, Eleanor Summerfield, Hubert Gregg
Frail Women (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Lilian has an illegitimate war-baby adopted by a wealthy spinster.

Director: Maurice Elvey
Stars: Mary Newcomb, Owen Nares, Edmund Gwenn


Complete credited cast:
Gwen Ffrangcon Davies ...
Gran (as Gwen Ffrangcon-Davies)
Isobel Muller ...
Maxine Day ...
Cosmo Pieterse ...
Mark Baillie ...
Walter Glennie


A white South African is shocked on a weekly visit to her sister's farm.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

apartheid | See All (1) »


Short | Drama





Release Date:

July 1968 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A mindent elsöprő tűz  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Frears' brilliant first effort
28 March 2010 | by (France) – See all my reviews

After working as an assistant director for Karel Reisz and Lindsay Anderson, Frears made his debut in 1967 with this short feature, a tale of racial tensions set in South Africa during the apartheid era.

Somewhere in South Africa, on a seemingly beautiful day, an old lady sets out with her grandson, her colored cook and chauffeur for her weekly visit to her sister's farm, in spite of the rumors that some sort of uprising has occurred. Signs of unrest are obvious as they make their way in the country, but the old lady ignores them and decides to go on with the journey. When they finally arrive, they discover a deserted house. A group of Black South African militants arrive a little while after. The chauffeur succeeds in diverting them so that the old lady, the little boy (who takes with him the keys of the car) and the cook can escape. Sadly enough, the chauffeur fails to escape as he can't use the car. He is eventually caught by the lynch mob and is burned in his car whilst the little boy looks on in horror. Meanwhile, the old lady picnics calmly with her cook on a hilltop, facing the sunset, as if nothing is going on.

Within 30 minutes, Stephen Frears says more about apartheid and oppression than any long lecture would do. Shot in a crisp black and white, Frears' film depicts a society where racial problems pervert all human relationships (see the opening scenes where the references to people's color are constant). The grandmother is an interesting character: haughty and snob, she obviously lives in her own world and does not seem to care about many things as long as she can stick to her routine. More likable (but not really an angel), the little boy (with whom we can easily identify) loses his innocence. Frears is subtle enough to avoid both melodrama and demonstration, using metaphor to describe a disintegrating civilization. "The Burning" is a clear indication of what Frears would become later: a director with a keen eye to social and racial tensions and a close attention to actors.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Burning (1968) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: