the wicker man

The Wicker Man is one of the most influential of all British horror movies. Not only did it create a genre, but its themes and tone have also spawned many a literary work.

It tells the story of police sergeant Neil Howie (Edward Woodward) who goes to a remote island in Scotland to investigate the disappearance of a child. He finds a merry band of pagans led by Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee).

The Story

The wicker man was an iron age device used in a human sacrifice ritual, according to ancient sources. These rituals were a part of the culture of the druids, a Celtic priestly order that existed in the UK, Ireland and Scotland. During the druid age, these priests were thought to be highly revered and played a number of important roles in their communities.

As a symbol of death and regeneration, the wicker man was popular among the druids, as well as the Romans who feared and disdained them. Caesar described it as a human “wicker-man” in his Commentary on the Gauls, and this description has become an iconic image for many modern viewers.

Despite being the source of the most famous image in popular culture, there is no conclusive evidence that the Romans ever used the wicker man for human sacrifice. In fact, this practice is believed to have been banned in ancient times.

However, the wicker man is still an important symbol in contemporary myths. It has been referenced in a variety of media, including films and television programs.

This fabled wicker-man figure has inspired a number of different images in popular culture, and is often depicted as a terrifying creature with wings. It has also been depicted as a reincarnated spirit, or an entity that can be summoned by the touch of a candle flame.

The wicker man is an important symbol in the film because it plays a role in the story of the main protagonist, Sergeant Neil Howie (Edward Woodward). He is a devout Christian who has saved himself for marriage and is committed to his beliefs.

When Howie is sent to the remote island of Summerisle to investigate the disappearance of a girl, he comes across the wicker man. He is awestruck by the statue’s size and striations, as well as its appearance. He is further amazed by the fact that the wicker man has an opening in its back that lets him look inside it.

Howie is drawn into the wicker man’s web of misdirection, as he is distracted from the mystery by his own moral convictions. When he is confronted with the truth, it is too late to save Rowan Morrison, but he remains determined to do everything in his power to prevent her death.

The Cast

Criss-crossing genres as it twists and turns, the wicker man is one of those films that few viewers are able to leave unshaken. Its rich and intelligent story leads to a massive twist that leaves most audience members stunned and haunted by the film’s final images.

It is a classic example of an arthouse horror/thriller that relies on carefully nurtured suspense rather than cheap, theatrical shocks. With an impressive set design and an attention to historical detail, the film asks questions and ponders issues that are often overlooked in horror films of this genre.

The story is largely told through dialogue, although music also plays an important role in the narrative. Hardy’s soundtrack frequently accompanies key scenes, including the arrival of the plane, Willow’s dancing, the maypole dance, the girls jumping through fire, the search of the houses, the procession, and the burning scene.

There are at least three musical numbers in the film, and a fourth was excised from the theatrical release but remains intact in the extended director’s cut. The songs are written by Paul Giovanni and include a traditional folk song based on Robert Burns’ “Corn Riggs” and an original composition.

Many of the characters in the film sing. Some of them perform their own compositions, and some others have their lines sung by other characters. In addition, the music is influenced by Celtic and Druid themes.

During production, the cast was surprised when director Robin Hardy announced midway through filming that they were making a musical. This decision, which was intended to surprise audiences, actually worked out well. The result was a film with some of the best-written songs in the history of British cinema.

The film was made at a time of financial crisis for the British film industry. The studio in charge of production, British Lion Films, was in trouble and was bought by wealthy businessman John Bentley. He wanted to get a film into production as quickly as possible, and so it had to be kept on a low budget.

The movie was a resounding success in Britain, and it was considered by some critics to be one of the best horror/thrillers of its time. In 2004, Total Film magazine rated it as the sixth best British film of all time and called it “The Citizen Kane of horror movies.” It was also included in a sequence during the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony, which celebrated British cinema. In 2013, a new digital restoration was released.

The Production

In a Deadline exclusive, we learn that a new take on Robin Hardy’s folk horror classic will be in development as a TV show. This upcoming series will be from Andy Serkis and Jonathan Cavendish’s production studio The Imaginarium (The Ritual, No One Gets Out Alive) and Studiocanal-backed Urban Myth Films (War of the Worlds). BAFTA-award winning writer Howard Overman will write the screenplay for the series, which is being pitched to broadcasters.

The Wicker Man, which was originally released in 1973, is an often-overlooked genre misfit that fuses the conventions of a detective thriller with religious allegory and even a musical. It is a strangely compelling tale of a police sergeant investigating the disappearance of a girl, who ends up on a remote Scottish island whose ancient religious beliefs run totally counter to his strongly-held Christian faith.

Although marketed as a horror film, the story of The Wicker Man is quite unlike any other in the British film canon, and has become a much-loved cult favourite. It is a misfit in that it flouts the conventional ‘good’ and ‘evil’ characters and supernatural elements found in horror movies, but also in that it tackles a subject which is very unfamiliar to the British audience – paganism.

Despite this, it is widely seen as an important film, a classic that has survived despite the fact that it was cut to about 12 minutes in post-production and eventually screened as part of a double bill with Nicholas Roeg’s Don’t Look Now. Moreover, it is often held up as the best movie that Christopher Lee ever made.

As a fan of the movie I have been interested in the film’s production and how it came to be so successful, and Allan Brown’s book is a fascinating read about all the behind-the-scenes details. It is an extremely thorough and meticulous account of every day on the set, from the first meeting between Hardy and Shaffer to the final production.

It is a wonderful book that deserves to be read by anyone who is interested in the history of film-making. It covers a lot of ground and is very comprehensive, but what makes it particularly useful is the amount of personal information about each day that is contained within. There are so many interesting anecdotes, and the author has written in such a way that it is easy to follow all of the story’s twists and turns.

The Critics

In a world of gothic horror movies with evil demons, supernatural killers and dark occult themes, the original version of the wicker man stood out as something radically different. It retold a tale of fear and dread with a light touch, shot in broad daylight and scored to placid guitar folk, eschewing the gothic atmosphere, infernal evils and crosses that made Hammer so popular.

It also embraced a strange and wonderful strain of uncanny horror: the idea that the people of Britain were full of weird little communities with their own peculiar customs and secrets. It spawned a genre, the English uncanny, which has become culturally resonant in the decades since it was first released.

The wicker man is best seen today, not just as a haunting cult classic but also as a template for future horror films that explore psychological, humanistic horror. It set the bar high, and it paved the way for contemporary writers to explore issues such as the idea that we all have hidden powers within us.

There’s no denying that the original was a major influence on later filmmakers, including Nicolas Cage (who earned his first Golden Raspberry nomination for playing Howie) and Neil LaBute (who directed the 2006 remake). But it isn’t just the film itself that can be seen as a precursor to modern cinema; it was the way in which the wicker man influenced our understanding of the genre that really mattered.

What makes the wicker man such a harrowing experience is that it isn’t so much about an evil cult, but about the underlying social and political issues of the time. In the original, there’s a police sergeant called Neil Howie (Edward Woodward) who travels to the island of Summerisle to investigate the disappearance of a young girl.

As Howie enters the island, he is immediately met with a bizarre and disorienting society. While they don’t seem remotely sinister, there is an active group effort to manipulate a single victim to their death over the course of several days.

It’s a bizarre, bewitching fable, but the final scene is one of the most terrifying in film history. Watch it once, and the uncanniness will be with you forever.