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  • Writer's pictureAllan Major

The Wicker Man 1973 Movie Poster

Featured Image For The Wicker Man 1973 Movie Poster.  Movie poster for "The Wicker Man" displaying a large, ominous wicker statue with figures around it, set against an orange background.
In the light of the setting sun, the Wicker Man awaits. A sacrifice of flesh and fear ignites the flames of a chilling ritual.

The poster for "The Wicker Man" (1973) is an iconic image that powerfully encapsulates the movie's disturbing and enigmatic atmosphere. With its stark and vibrant orange-yellow backdrop, the poster immediately draws the eye, the color evoking the flames that play such a critical role in the film’s climax. The looming structure of the Wicker Man, a giant, ominous effigy that dominates the top half of the poster, stands as a chilling symbol of the pagan rituals that are central to the movie’s plot.

The text "Flesh to touch... Flesh to burn! Don't keep the Wicker Man waiting!" runs across the top in bold, commanding lettering, setting a foreboding tone. It hints at the film’s dark exploration of sacrifice and belief, and the terror of being an outsider in a society governed by ancient, merciless customs.

Below the effigy, a montage of images features the film’s characters in moments of prayer, anguish, and ecstatic worship, capturing the duality of the islanders' lives, marked by serene rural existence and brutal ritual practices. The central figure, Police Sergeant Neil Howie, portrayed by Edward Woodward, appears in a moment of desperation, encapsulating his conflict as a man of the law and faith confronting a society that rejects his authority and beliefs.

Directed by Robin Hardy and starring Christopher Lee as Lord Summerisle, the film is renowned for its unsettling portrayal of a secluded community on a remote Scottish island, whose seemingly idyllic life masks dark and horrifying secrets. The film masterfully blends elements of horror, mystery, and a critique of societal norms, using the folk setting to create an atmosphere that is both idyllic and deeply disturbing.

The poster’s tagline, “A totally corrupt shocker from the author of ‘Sleuth’ and ‘Frenzy’!”, references the acclaimed screenwriter Anthony Shaffer, enhancing the expectation of a sophisticated and cerebral horror film. Shaffer's script, combined with the haunting score and evocative cinematography, creates a nuanced tapestry of horror that lingers long after the film ends.

At the bottom, the title "The Wicker Man" is set in a rustic font that echoes the film’s setting, suggesting the intertwining of the story with the old-world folklore that inspires it. This poster does not merely advertise a film; it promises a disturbing journey into the heart of human darkness and the power of ancient rites, a promise that the film itself disturbingly delivers.

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