Sergeant Howie has received an anonymous letter concerning a young girl missing on Summerisle. Within the opening credits Howie flies to the remote island in search of answers.
From his very first encounter with the inhabitants of Summerisle the Sergeant realizes he's had root canals easier than gaining their cooperation. For every questions asked he receives a confident lie. When truth is accidently discovered more lies and manipulation are applied.
Slowly but surely Howie catches a small glimpse of the twisted games being played. A devout Christian, virgin, and believer of all things holy, Sergeant Howie uncovers a plot to sacrifice the missing girl to the gods of harvest ensuring better crops next year. Unknown to the lone officer, sometimes a plan is only plan leading to bigger plans. Sometimes the hunter becomes the hunted.
The Wicker Man is no doubt a very twisted tale dabbling in the uncompromising Christian faith and underground pagan worship of "old gods".
First of all I was surprised the film was in color. Ha...second of all I was surprised when a scene broke out into song and dance. Not so much as a musical would but these elements were boldly incorporated through drunken bar scenes and ceremonial hymns. The characters would prance and kick through a routine riding the thin directorial line between ridiculous and ingenious. It worked well...I was just surprised.
The acting was good for the most part. I understand the director used a lot of the locals from the town in his scenes. Fortunately they blend in flawlessly amongst the other talent. This is the first movie I've seen Christopher Lee act in where he was so young. He did as expected... a perfectly creepy job with his confident boom of a voice and tall giraffe like strides.
The movie was good. I think I just expected so much more. I remember feeling as I was watching that I would disappointingly rate it a 2 or 2.5. I was enjoying it but it just wasn't taking me anywhere I expected to go. Finally, the last scene of the The Wicker Man blew my socks off. Finally I got that impactful disturbing scene I was looking for. Finally I began to feel something. In interviews the filmmakers kept saying they were trying to create a new kind of horror movie, one that broke out of the cliches. I think the last thirty minutes hits the nail on the head.
The Wicker Man is no doubt a classic that demands respect. I guess I just expected a little more from a film that's been haunting my queue for so many months... even years.