Tuesday, 29 March 2016
The Wicker Man [1973 version] (4¾ Stars)
When I reviewed the 2006 remake of "The Wicker Man" in 2010 I said I would watch the original version soon. As you can see, I'm not the most reliable of film reviewers. If I ever keep you waiting like this again, please remind me.
I enjoyed the remake of the film, but I now have to say that the original is better. It's usually described as a horror film, but I don't think that label fits. It's a supernatural mystery film. A police sergeant travels to the small Scottish island of Summerisle, a fictional island in the Outer Hebrides, to investigate the report of a missing girl. He meets with resistance from everyone he talks to. At first the islanders say that the girl doesn't exist. When he finds evidence of her they say she died of natural causes, but he's unable to find her body. The sergeant, a devout Christian, is horrified to find that the islanders all follow a pagan religion.
This is an excellent film with remarkable performances by Edward Woodward and Christopher Lee. It's somehow absurd to see pagan rituals being practised in Scotland. The Scottish islands and coastal areas are all under the control of extreme Christian sects. In that regard the remake is more credible, because it relocates the island to the north west of America.
Yes, that's Christopher Lee with an amazing hair do!