A young couple moves in to an apartment only to be surrounded by peculiar neighbors and occurrences. When the wife becomes mysteriously pregnant, paranoia over the safety of her unborn child begins to control her life.
There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these bloodthirsty, flesh-eating monsters.
On Sunday, April 29, 1973, Sergeant Neil Howie with the West Highland Constabulary flies solo to Summerisle off the coast of Scotland. He is there to follow up on a letter addressed specifically to him from an anonymous source on Summerisle reporting that a twelve year old girl who lives on the island, Rowan Morrison, the daughter of May Morrison, has long been missing. The correspondence includes a photograph of Rowan. Upon his arrival on Summerisle, Howie finds that the locals are a seemingly simple minded lot who provide little information beyond the fact that they know of no Rowan Morrison and do not know the girl in the photo. Mrs. Morrison admits to having a daughter, seven year old Myrtle, but no Rowan. As Howie speaks to more and more people, he begins to believe that Rowan does or did live on the island, but that the locals are hiding their knowledge of her. He also begins to see that the locals all have pagan beliefs, their "religion" which centers on procreation as the ...Written by
In the bedroom seduction scene, Woodward's character is seen in close up pressing himself against the wall. A ring is clearly seen on the fourth finger of his left hand. At all other times in the film the ring is on the fourth finger of his right hand and there is no ring on his left hand. See more »
[Short Version only] A message from the producers thanks "The Lord Summerisle and the people of his island" for co-operating in the making of the film. This is despite both the lord and the island being totally fictitious. See more »
The later video release featured another recovered pre-title scene of Howie in the police station, which was not seen in the Director's Cut theatrical release. See more »
Years before Edward Woodward gained a measure of fame in the States as TV's Equalizer, he portrayed a dogged police detective poking around a remote Scottish island in search of the truth about a missing girl in Robin Hardy's The Wicker Man. His performance here is easily one of his best -- in order for the unbelievable and unthinkable story to succeed, Woodward must convince us that all of the unnerving events that take place throughout the movie are entirely plausible. He certainly convinced me, and I have never been able to forget the traumatic, harrowing conclusion of the film. Christopher Lee, Britt Ekland, Ingrid Pitt and the rest of the cast provide perfect counterpoint to Woodward's analytical outsider.
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