7.6/10
52,667
459 user 208 critic

The Wicker Man (1973)

A police sergeant is sent to a Scottish island village in search of a missing girl whom the townsfolk claim never existed. Stranger still are the rites that take place there.

Director:

Writer:

(screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
2,555 ( 850)

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A married couple grieving the recent death of their young daughter are in Venice when they encounter two elderly sisters, one of whom is psychic and brings a warning from beyond.

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Julie Christie, Donald Sutherland, Hilary Mason
Suspiria (1977)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A newcomer to a prestigious ballet academy comes to realize that the school is a front for something sinister amidst a series of grisly murders.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci
The Omen (1976)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Mysterious deaths surround an American ambassador. Could the child that he is raising actually be the Antichrist? The Devil's own son?

Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Gregory Peck, Lee Remick, Harvey Stephens
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.7/10 X  

A sheriff investigating the disappearance of a young girl from a small island discovers there's a larger mystery to solve among the island's secretive, neo-pagan community.

Director: Neil LaBute
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Ellen Burstyn, Leelee Sobieski
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A young couple moves in to an apartment only to be surrounded by peculiar neighbors and occurrences. When the wife becomes mysteriously pregnant, paranoia over the safety of her unborn child begins to control her life.

Director: Roman Polanski
Stars: Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes, Ruth Gordon
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Lindsay Kemp ...
Russell Waters ...
...
Irene Sunters ...
May Morrison (as Irene Sunter)
...
Ian Campbell ...
Oak
Leslie Blackater ...
Hairdresser
Roy Boyd ...
Peter Brewis ...
Musician
Barbara Rafferty ...
Woman with Baby (as Barbara Ann Brown)
Edit

Storyline

On Sunday, April 29, 1973, Sergeant Neil Howie with the West Highland Constabulary flies solo to Summerisle off the coast of Scotland. He is there to follow up on a letter addressed specifically to him from an anonymous source on Summerisle reporting that a twelve year old girl who lives on the island, Rowan Morrison, the daughter of May Morrison, has long been missing. The correspondence includes a photograph of Rowan. Upon his arrival on Summerisle, Howie finds that the locals are a seemingly simple minded lot who provide little information beyond the fact that they know of no Rowan Morrison and do not know the girl in the photo. Mrs. Morrison admits to having a daughter, seven year old Myrtle, but no Rowan. As Howie speaks to more and more people, he begins to believe that Rowan does or did live on the island, but that the locals are hiding their knowledge of her. He also begins to see that the locals all have pagan beliefs, their "religion" which centers on procreation as the ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The residents of Summerisle invited Sergeant Howie to their traditional May Day festival. He didn't expect to meet...The Wicker Man See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 August 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El culto siniestro  »

Box Office

Budget:

£500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,493 (USA) (29 September 2013)

Gross:

$60,891 (USA) (10 January 2014)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended) | (final cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Lord Summerisle's speech beginning with "I think I could turn and live with the animals" in the full version of the film is based on a poem by Walt Whitman. See more »

Goofs

While Sgt Howie is at the chemist shop he shows Lennox (who is mixing something with a mortar and pestle) a photo of the missing girl. Notice how in between shots the photo goes from Howie's hand into Lennox's hand, without having been handed over. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Sergeant Howie: [yelling] Will you send a dinghy, please?
See more »

Crazy Credits

[Short Version only] A message from the producers thanks "The Lord Summerisle and the people of his island" for co-operating in the making of the film. This is despite both the lord and the island being totally fictitious. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Truly, Madly, Cheaply!: British B Movies (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Sunset
(uncredited)
Performed by Magnet
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Chilling insight into ancient paganistic rituals, slightly chipped
5 January 1999 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

The bizarre and chilling tale of a fool chosen to be king for a day.

The shocking denouement of this film has stayed with me for many years, far longer than scenes or images from more famous films. A classic of its kind, it deserves the re-release it will probably never get.

Superficially a mystery thriller, this intelligent and well researched story delves into the beliefs and rituals of Ancient Britain, its folk mythologies and music, and reveals some of the un-settling fears that lie at their root. Set on a remote Scottish Island and giving the appearance of being a Whisky Galore, Local Hero type community, there is yet something off-centre about the townspeople that Edward Woodward, as Sergeant Howie, has come to investigate. The presence of Christopher Lee as the eloquent, commanding Lord of the Isle, gives the film an insidiously creepy edge suggesting a Hammer Horror lurks around the next wee wall. He is perfect in the role.

The story un-folds like a cross between Chinatown and Rosemary's Baby, as the dogged Howie gets led all over town, up one blind alley and down another. Clues are dropped all the way about what is really going on, but we don't heed them. Until it's too late. Too late to walk away.

The standard video version runs for 85 minutes, cuts many important scenes and shows others out of sequence. A BBC version shown in 1998 ran around 95 minutes. The full version ran 102 minutes but I have never found it.

However, whilst uneven in parts and certainly flawed this is one of the most intelligent and interesting stories I have ever seen on film. See it yourself and you too will have many meetings with 'The Wicker Man', in your dreams, in the dark, where you cannot escape.


165 of 205 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?