Fig 1 - DVD cover.
The Wicker Man is a 1973 British film, combining thriller, horror and musical genres, directed by Robin Hardy and written by Anthony Shaffer. Paul Giovanni composed the soundtrack. The film is now considered a cult classic.
Inspired by the basic scenario of David Pinner's 1967 novel The Ritual, the story centres on the visit of Police Sergeant Neil Howie to the isolated island of Summerisle, in search of a missing girl the locals claim never existed. Howie is a devout Christian, and is appalled by a religion loosely inspired by Celtic paganism practised by the inhabitants of the island.
Directed by: Robin Hardy
Produced by: Peter Snell
Written by: Anthony Shaffer
Duration: 88 mins
The wicker man keeps the audience in uncertainty right up till the end when it finally reveals its true self, the locals on the island are key to making the audience feel alienated and make them take side with Sgt. Neil very early on in the film which slowly makes the locals even weirder as the films goes on.
The wicker man starts off as one thing then slowly becomes something else towards the end, the locals being decisive towards Sgt. Neil by denying Rowan never existed but clues that pointed to that she did exist.
“The Wicker Man's genre-bending, thematic daring, and tortuous history have made it the U.K.'s definitive cult movie.” (Fuller 2006)
fig 2 - Willow banging the walls.
Sex is strong throughout the film, also religion and music which the on the island children in the film are taught about the subjects at a young age which to the audience is disturbing. Also scenes Where Willow is dancing naked and hitting the walls next to Sgt. Neil room to a beat is a scene combining all three music, sex and religion in one go almost tempting Sgt. Neil to give in.
“It envelops you in a time and space that is unfamiliar, fascinating, exotic, and frightening all at once.” (Gonzalez 2007)
Fig 3 - The Ending
As for the ending the film, which is probably one of the most memorable ending for a film will either be a complete surprise from someone who didn't pick up on the hints throughout the film but for someone who was it will be satisfying to know they were right. The film is all about cat and mouse, dropping hints to the viewers throughout the film.
“A subtle, effective horror classic featuring an unforgettable finale”. (Niccum 2004)