Tuesday, 5 April 2016

CUTTING EDGES 10: The Wicker Man (1973)

Fig.1. 'The Wicker Man' (1973) Poster
'The Wicker Man' (1974) is a whirlwind of strange happenings. From odd religious rituals to phallic symbols forced upon the screen. Director Robin Hardy created a reclusive world that lures you in with it's weird social conventions and entices the viewer to be entertained by their joyous songs. A soft porn, horror, musical sing-a-long. Exciting.

Fig.2 Film Still
The world that Hardy has envisioned is that of one which is seemingly mundane and normal, that is until we are welcomes by it's inhabitants. 'From the moment Howie arrives on Summerisle, responding to an anonymous tip about a missing girl, it's clear that something is off kilter' ( SDG, s.d). Instantly these odd characters give off a strange vibe, they are unlike most folk, to them everything seems somewhat harmonious, as if everything is in order.
In a way this does turn out to be the case, their seductive actions lure the lonesome, virgin police officer Sergeant Howie, played by Edward Woodward into a world he is not accustom to. A religious (Christian) man himself, Sergeant Howie is the man on the case looking for a missing girl, here whereabouts are unknown but his suspicions lead him to believe that she is somewhere on the island.

There is a scene within the film that sees the Christian police officer seemingly act again his own will as he spasms across the room towards the white walls of his part-time residence, all because of strange going on in the room opposite. ''And Howie's faith comes under assault when Willow (Britt Ekland), The sensual daughter of the local innkeeper, offered herself to him' (Berardinelli, s.d)
Willow, played by Britt Ekland, seductively parades around her room banging on the walls, enticing Sergeant Howie to rise from his bed and act in response to an invitation as she calls it the morning after. This scene comes as a bit of a show in a way, it's there, it happens and we have to watch helplessly, slightly in awe of this mans sudden loss of self control. 

Fig.3 Film Still
The film's 87 minute run time goes rapidly, maybe it's because as a viewer you are hypnotised by the odd things that take place upon the screen, just like Sergeant Howie, you want to look away, but you can't. 'More importantly, the nightmarish sense of bewilderment as the film gradually reveals what has been lurking all along has not dulled with age at all' (Fear, 2013)
From his arrival on the island to his heated departure within the burning wicker man, it all goes so quickly you forget what you have seen has actually happened. 

Maybe it's something in the water??


Figure 1. 'The Wicker Man' (1973) [ Movie Poster] At:https://www.movieposter.com/posters/archive/main/113/MPW-56820 Accessed on: 05-04-2016

Figure 2. [Film Still] At: http://www.popoptiq.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/Wicker-Man-1973-6-300x201.jpg Accessed on: 05-04-2016

Figure 3. [Film Still] At: http://basementrejects.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/wicker-man-1973-ending-wicker-man-burning.jpg Accessed on: 05-04-2016


Berardinelli, J (s.d) The Wicker Man (United Kingdom, 1973) At: http://www.reelviews.net/reelviews/wicker-man-the_818 Accessed on: 05-04-2016

Fear, D (2013) 'The Wicker Man' At: http://www.timeout.com/us/film/the-wicker-man-1973 Accessed on: 05-04-2016

SDG (s.d) 'The Wicker Man (1973)' At: http://www.decentfilms.com/reviews/wickerman1973 Accessed on: 05-04-2016

1 comment:

  1. 'A soft porn, horror, musical sing-a-long. Exciting.'...what better way to spend a Tuesday afternoon :)