The Wicker Man

The Wicker Man

Robin Hardy (1973)

84min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
Playing on our fears of "the other", director Robin Hardy's psychosexual horror, first released in 1973, has now attained classic status. Brilliantly scripted by Anthony Shaffer (Sleuth) and impressively staged on location, the film stars Edward Woodward as the devoutly Christian policeman, Sergeant Howie, who travels to a remote Hebridean island to investigate the disappearance of a young girl. As his efforts are hampered by the islanders' wall of silence, Howie's prudish disapproval of these neo-pagan worshippers turns to outrage - not least when he is "tempted" by the pub landlord's free-spirited daughter (Britt Ekland) and given an audience with the mysterious Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee). The Wicker Man does have some stilted moments, but it still manages to pack a bizarre, disturbing punch. The shorter running time of this original theatrical version does impact on the narrative depth of the story. The 2002 director's cut (available on DVD) is much closer to Hardy's vision.

Summary

A devoutly Christian Scottish police officer travels to a remote island to investigate the disappearance of a missing girl. As his investigations are disrupted at every turn, the detective is horrified to see the population have embraced an ancient pagan lifestyle, and begins to fear they may intend to sacrifice the child in an occult ritual. Director's cut of the horror, starring Edward Woodward, Christopher Lee and Britt Ekland.

Cast & Crew

Sgt Neil Howie Edward Woodward
Lord Summerisle Christopher Lee
Willow MacGregor Britt Ekland
Miss Rose Diane Cilento
Librarian/Clerk Ingrid Pitt
Alder MacGregor Lindsay Kemp
May Morrison Irene Sunters
Harbour master Russell Waters
Broome Roy Boyd
Director Robin Hardy
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Studio CanalGuidance: May be edited for language, violence and nudity.Available on: video, DVD and Blu-ray
Drama