Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I Bury The Living: Black Pins Seal Your Fate

By Steve D. Stones

This taut psychological horror film could just about rival any Alfred Hitchcock thriller of the same era. The film stars Richard Boone in the role of retail store President Bob Kraft. Kraft has been appointed by members of his family to help manage part time a local cemetery as a service to the community.

A large map of the cemetery is on display in the cemetery office. In the map, black colored pins are stuck in plots representing those who have passed on. White pins on the map represent those who are still living, but have a plot reserved for the future.

One day Kraft accidentally sticks two black pins in a plot reserved for a recently married young couple. The couple turn up dead the next day, having died in a car crash.

Kraft’s next victim is a toy maker named William Isham. Kraft randomly sticks a black pin in the map reserved for Isham. Isham is reported dead later that day.

To prove Kraft is not insane, the cemetery committee demands that he put black pins in the reserved plots of each of the members. One by one, each committee member turns up dead.

Various scenes in I Bury The Living are reminiscent of silent era German-Expressionist films. For example, as Kraft slowly begins to lose his mind in the cemetery office, the map on the wall slowly gets bigger and bigger. The map finally becomes so large that it nearly consumes the entire room, as Kraft puts a gun to his head to commit suicide. The map becomes a symbol of Kraft’s insane mind, much like the unstable, angular environments seen in The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari representing the insane mind of the protagonist Francis.

A local Utah cable channel – channel 9 The Utah Education Network, has featured I Bury The Living a number of times on their Sci-Fi Friday program, which airs every Friday at 9 p.m. A big thumbs up for I Bury The Living! Watch the trailer above!

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