10/5/12 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #5 – The Wicker Man (1973)

Wicker Man

This is a SPOILER ALERT-filled post. Know that right up front. Because quite honestly, you can’t even talk about this movie, and its main contribution to the world of horror, without discussing the major spoiler of this film. I repeat, SPOILER freakin’ ALERT. If you want to be surprised at all, stop reading now. But to be honest, the movie came out in 1973, so if you haven’t watched it yet, or heard about the ending, crawl out from under your rock. Seriously…

Okay, now that’s out of the way, I take it the rest of you have either seen the movie, already know about the ending, or just don’t care. Whatever the reason, this is an interesting movie to discuss. First of all, The Wicker Man isn’t scary. Not one bit. It’s hardly a horror movie at all, but rather a mystery. But why does it have such a high regard in the horror world? It’s all because of the finale. The finale where (one last spoiler alert)… you realize the entire movie you just watched was one huge lie. Everyone was in on it except for the main character, the police sergeant, who we had the unfortunate role of following the entire time. He (and thus, the viewer) was the rube. He was set up to be sacrificed and killed all the way from the very beginning. There was no disappearance, no murder, nothing. Just a 90 minute lie. This was one of the first times in modern day filmmaking that this kind of manipulation had been done to this extent. It blew everyone’s socks off. A twist ending! The villains win! How can a horror fan not love this?? You wonder why this film is held in high regard amongst horror fans? Because without it, there wouldn’t be as many of those wonderful twist endings you love today. Now, also know, this movie is honked up. Like SERIOUSLY honked up. It’s literally like watching the most bizarre sexual shit British people could ever think of, and then making it even more bizarre. That also could be a major reason why those of us who like messed up things enjoy it. It’s super sexual, has tons of weird nudity and sex, and is filled with awesome 70’s style. Oh, and Christopher Lee dresses in drag. So, there’s that. Oh man, this flick is so insane. Just do me a favor and forget the Nicholas Cage remake even existed (watch the “BEES!” clip from it on YouTube and you’ve seen enough.) Regardless, 1973, The Wicker Man, twist ending, just awesome.

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