The new THE WICKER MAN...*sigh* I didn't dislike it.

As an unnecessary remake of a classic 1970’s horror/thriller, it was better than June’s THE OMEN. Standing on it’s own, if the first had never existed, the LaBute/Cage THE WICKER MAN was not uninteresting or unentertaining. Of course, it suffers in comparison to the first, but I did find myself, unexpectly & rather reluctantly, becoming intrigued as to how this one would unfold.

Btw, unboxed spoilers will abound…

Good points: they didn’t wimp out on the ending, there were enough similarities to the original but done with enough variation to make it interesting, Ellen Burstyn did better as a gender-switched Christopher Lee than I expected.

Iffy point: Has LaBute come under the influence of David Lynch? He gets Angelo Badalamenti to do the music? He has surreal freaky characters of the sort one might expect in a Lynch film (the blind elderly identical twins who speak in stereo
really stand out, but also a quick scene of a “naked” girl covered in bees).
Also, the new Summerisle as a hive/pseudo-Wiccan personality cult around the
Queen Bee Sister Summerisle. Hmmmm… Which brings me to the main problem…

Main flaw- The original gives us an honest consistent religious police officer vs.
fun-loving happily-fornicating albeit somewhat-sinister pagans. Each side has
strong convictions. You may agree with Sgt Howie but ya gotta admit that
Summerisle folk would be great to party with.
BUT the remake gives us a traumatized decent officer who doesn’t seem to believe in anything but his self-help tapes vs a dour humorlous womynist-pseudo-Wicco-Amish cult. Sgt Edward is a good guy but is fighting something with nothing. He can’t even muster up a good prophetic denunciation or a statement of what he does believe at the end. On the other hand, while New Summerisle is a committed community, they are just a hive around the Queen, and the female-to-male imbalance is one that would only appeal to those who are already heading for a gyno-seperatist cult.

If you haven’t seen either, get the first. Then if you’re really curious how a remake might work out, I sorta recommend the new one.

Still awaiting the new Hardy-Chris Lee “Cowboys for Christ” AND the possibly stage version of the ORIGINAL “The Wicker Man”…

The remake is getting really lousy reviews on both the Internet Movie Database and Rotten Tomatoes. I think I’m gonna pass on this one.

And I so like the original …

The remake fails in many ways, but I welcomed the “compare/contrast to the original film” exercise as a think-piece. The Wicker Man is one of the few pop-culture phenomena about which I feel comfortable going all-out in unabashed geekery, like a Trekker on the latest Star Trek product. :o It’s admittedly a lot to slog through, but, then, you serious “Wicker Man” fans know who you are…

As someone who hasn’t yet seen either version, I want to thank you for the warning. I’m not going to read any more of the thread after this.
Just thought you’d like to know that someone appreciated it.

Can you tell me if something I heard about the movie is true? Supposedly the community at Summersisle is similar to an Amish community, eschewing all modern conveniences such as electricity, phones, any sort of technology. Yet early in the film (before the audience is aware of the nature the community) the protagonist makes a visit to that very community’s website. Did this happen?

That’s just one of many, many inconsistencies and absurdities in this poor excuse for a movie. I love Neil LaBute but IMO this is one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen Zapped Again.

Was it www.wouldyouliketobeburnedasasacrifice.com?

The answer to that seeming contradiction is on this very board. Their computers are powered by hamsters!

There are also, very clearly visible, electrical outlets in the houses.

The Amish have web sites, they’re just run through a proxy.

Never saw it. Never will. But [url"http://youtube.com/watch?v=e6i2WRreARo&mode=related&search="]here’s a highlight reel. :smiley:

Fixed coding.

Ouch.

The original is one of my all-time faves, I like Nicholas Cage, and I thought the timing was perfect to revisit the personification of religiously-conservative, sexually repressed Authority. I was really looking forward to it.

Bleah.

They discarded the most fundamental things about the original, keeping the general story arc, but tossing out everything that made what happened interesting.

The ambiguity was the first thing to go on the pyre – the inhabitants of Summerisle were comically Evil. Boring.

I liked some of the things that they added in – but they were only superficial: The rock-video quality dreams and hallucinations were nice eye-candy, for sure.

The big problem, though, was that the movie suffered from the single worst case of Script By Committee that I’ve ever seen. There were so many little details that telegraphed a cleaned-up, Wizard of Oz ending. That this ending never materializes doesn’t make the movie any less dissatisfying, because everything else in the film logically leads up to it. What’s the point of the initial episode with the little girl and the dramatic fire, and the numerous incidents of flaky reality, if they don’t fucking follow it through?

It’s like the whole project was shot with the idea, “We’re going to do this… it’ll be awesome!” and then, after 95% of it was in the can, they changed their mind because they didn’t want to piss everyone off – but the Trite Idea permeates every preceeding frame, even if they did decide against it, in the end.

Watching the remake of The Wicker Man is like being forced to spend the long weekend on a a Greyhound to Cleveland, and just when you think it can’t get any worse, you find out that your ticket only gets you as far as the outskirts of Cleveland.

I haven’t seen the original, but my problem with the new one was just that it seemed to all lead quite faithfully and naturally exactly where you expected it to go.

“Okay, now he’s going to get locked into the subteranean jail, ayup there it goes.”

“Alright, now the daughter is going to go up and light him on fire, since that would be evillest…ayup there she goes.”

Maybe it’s just a matter that the original has been copied and imitated too many times in other films, and while this sort of progression was a surprise then, but now to me it just seemed like it was standard formulaic progress from start to end.