A cult horror classic, being shown in its director’s cut, and winner of the Grand Prize at the third International Festival of Fantasy and Science Fiction Films,The Wicker Manwas described by Variety as ‘one of the most unusual films to come out of Britain in years.’
The story is set in the Scottish Isles, where strait-laced Christian and virginal mainland police sergeant Howie (Edward Woodward) is posted an anonymous letter from the island of Summerisle alleging a number of irregularities about the disappearance of a young girl. When he investigates, he comes up against the mysterious Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee) and the rampant pagan sensuality of the islanders, particularly that of Willow (Britt Ekland). Determined to get to the bottom of the matter, Woodward’s investigations begin to unearth a sinister and ultimately evil foundation to the island’s community that leads to human sacrifice and tragedy.
As a work of fiction, the film has been absorbed into the symbolism and ritual of modern-day pagan rites although such figures as the wicker man and the green man have their root in Britain’s past, in particular among Celtic lore.
UK / British Lion / 88 minutes / 1973
Christopher Lee as Lord Summerisle
Edward Woodward as Sergeant Howie
Britt Ekland as Willow
Ingrid Pitt as Librarian
Robin Hardy as Minister (uncredited)
Aubrey Morris as Old Gardener / Gravedigger
Diane Cilento as Miss Rose
Lindsay Kemp as Alder MacGreagor
Irene Sunters as May Morrison
Walter Carr as School Master
Roy Boyd as Broome
Russell Waters as Harbour Master
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