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The Wicker Man

R Released Aug 7, 1974 1h 42m Mystery & Thriller Horror List
91% Tomatometer 65 Reviews 82% Audience Score 25,000+ Ratings
Sergeant Howie (Edward Woodward) arrives on the small Scottish island of Summerisle to investigate the report of a missing child. A conservative Christian, the policeman observes the residents' frivolous sexual displays and strange pagan rituals, particularly the temptations of Willow (Britt Ekland), daughter of the island magistrate, Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee). The more Sergeant Howie learns about the islanders' strange practices, the closer he gets to tracking down the missing child. Read More Read Less
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The Wicker Man

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Critics Consensus

This intelligent horror film is subtle in its thrills and chills, with an ending that is both shocking and truly memorable.

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Critics Reviews

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Steven D. Greydanus Decent Films The gothic ambiance and mood synonymous with the era's familiar tales of unholy menace is wholly absent. If there is evil here, it doesn't know it's evil. Rated: B- Oct 29, 2008 Full Review Variety Staff Variety Anthony Shaffer penned the screenplay which, for sheer imagination and near-terror, has seldom been equalled. Oct 7, 2008 Full Review Dave Kehr Chicago Reader Robin Hardy's 1973 cult horror film passed through several distributors, several versions, and several bankruptcies, picking up a powerful reputation along the way. Oct 7, 2008 Full Review Bianca Garner The Film Bee I think what makes The Wicker Man so disturbing is the way that the filmmakers depict the dangers of cult mentality and the horror of belonging to an isolated community. May 16, 2024 Full Review June Butler Film Ireland Magazine The Wicker Man is an epithet to the desecration of purity. Mar 18, 2024 Full Review Eddie Harrison film-authority.com ...locating a beating pagan heart behind Scottish superstitions, The Wicker Man shows civilised man at a loss, out of his depth and helpless in the face of a fervent radicalism he thought had long-since vanished… Rated: 5/5 Feb 20, 2024 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

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kenna s As a witchy gal I really enjoyed this films strong occult imagery and witchcraft symbolism! Way ahead of it's time in my opinion. Creepy and intriguing with a couple good plot twists Light some candles, sprinkle your popcorn with protection salt and enjoy! Rated 5 out of 5 stars 07/18/24 Full Review Blu B All Time Classic. Everything is really well done about it. It's a solid arthouse type of thriller you think until the final 10-15 minutes when he plot twist occurs. And everything truly makes sense. This truly wins points just for one of the most bizarre, original, and twisted endings I've ever seen. It ruly makes the entire film and is just beyond memorable. It asks questions about religion and in a way is a satire of it at the same time. It's very difficult to describe but this is 100% a horror movie but it doesn't feel anything close to it until the final 15 minutes and even than it's nothing like I can describe. It's almost like The Exorcist ending where the horror is a truly unique kind of unsettling. This walks such a fine line between absract, original, and clever that doesn't really become apprant until the end. I truly can't state enough just stay with it until the final 15 minutes. You feel it's building to something in the second half as it just gets weird but never gets weird in the way the reamke does where you laugh. You become more intrigued. I really can't describe it. In a way the weird stuff like the nudity, weird girls being taught sex stuff in the school house, the animal party masks, none of this should work. But it somehow does. Everyone should give this a try once. One of the most original things I've ever seen. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 06/06/24 Full Review To F Toda la película es entretenida, en ningún momento te aburres. La trama y su historia son muy buenas. Supongo que era algo nueva para su época.. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 05/28/24 Full Review Dan R After the debacle which was the 2006 remake I decided to save my sanity with the original 1973 'The Wicker Man'. SYNOPSIS: 'A puritan police sergeant arrives in a Scottish island village in search of a missing girl, who the pagan locals claim never existed.' Although the remake shares the same premise of the original film, and a lot of the same dialogue, they're very different films. They're night and day. Poles apart. This film is an intelligent horror film which builds the chills and the horror slowly and subtly. It's part folk musical, part occult chiller, and quite bonkers. Edward Woodward is incredible as the religious police officer who is offended by everything he finds on the island before his untimely and horrific death. The film is also a fantastic look at the horror genre of 1970's Britain and the things which were considered to be disturbing and upsetting to the general public at the time. 'The Wicker Man' is a minimalistic horror masterpiece. A classic. Is this the most impactful and disturbing ending in movie history? 9/10 Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 04/12/24 Full Review Madie R "The Wicker Man" shows viewers that a good horror movie doesn't need to rely on jump scares or gory slashings to frighten the audience. I'd classify the movie more as a disturbing suspenseful drama/mystery about religious philosophy. Also surprised by the great score and music. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/25/24 Full Review Tyler G The Wicker Man does a great job leading up to the spectacular ending reveal with the help of a fantastic soundtrack. It's one of my favorite horror reveals. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/02/24 Full Review Read all reviews
The Wicker Man

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Cast & Crew

The Wicker Tree 20% 10% The Wicker Tree She Creature 38% 44% She Creature Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning 60% 55% Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning Psycho 41% 28% Psycho The Hole 53% 53% The Hole Discover more movies and TV shows. View More

Movie Info

Synopsis Sergeant Howie (Edward Woodward) arrives on the small Scottish island of Summerisle to investigate the report of a missing child. A conservative Christian, the policeman observes the residents' frivolous sexual displays and strange pagan rituals, particularly the temptations of Willow (Britt Ekland), daughter of the island magistrate, Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee). The more Sergeant Howie learns about the islanders' strange practices, the closer he gets to tracking down the missing child.
Director
Robin Hardy
Producer
Peter Snell
Screenwriter
Anthony Shaffer
Distributor
Warner Bros. Pictures
Production Co
British Lion Film Corporation
Rating
R
Genre
Mystery & Thriller, Horror
Original Language
English
Release Date (Theaters)
Aug 7, 1974, Original
Rerelease Date (Theaters)
Jul 7, 2023
Release Date (Streaming)
Oct 6, 2016
Box Office (Gross USA)
$61.8K
Runtime
1h 42m
Sound Mix
Mono
Aspect Ratio
35mm, Flat (1.85:1)
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