The Wicker Man was by far one of the most poorly put together films I have ever seen, it was just horrible. It is a remake of the 1973 cult classic of the same name, (the old one was bad too) I was hoping they would revamp it and make it better, instead it was another movie not worthy of the infamous cult classic status. Not just in delivery but in packaging as well. The trailers made it out to be some sort of scary and truly terrifying movie yet it was nothing like what the film company wanted us to believe.
There were so many instances of crap that I can't even begin to name them all but I will try. For one the film supposedly centers around druidism and ritual pagan sacrifice. Yet no ritualistic sacrifices are seen, instead the movie moves with the speed of a slug and centers around Edward Malus (Nicholas Cage) a traumatized cop who ventures to the remote and privately owned island of Summers Isle looking for a missing girl after receiving a letter from an old flame. This is when the film begins to just trudge along with limp dialog and poor acting. I never felt the immense trauma this man was supposedly going through, or the way he feels about his old girl friend or even his emotion when he finds out important details in the film. Perhaps it was because Nicholas Cage wasn't trying to act or was saving his good stuff for his other four movies that are coming to theaters in the next year. It sure didn't seem like he was an actor in this film because he was so dry in the delivery of his lines. The emotional weight of a situation is never seen on Nicholas Cage's face.
It seemed as if director Neil Labute just said action and cut and thats about it. The direction was ambiguous to say the least, you really couldn't tell the film had a director, because he surely didn't direct the actors well enough for you to get immersed in a story. Labute's direction had so many flaws that it was nearly impossible to bring anything away from the film other than confusion and anger. Confusion about what you just saw, and anger when you figure out that what you just saw was worthy of a refund of time and money.
There was nothing that caught my eye or stood out about the cinematography, or lighting. Some of the camera work set a scene up nicely by bringing the subject in to focus and making it the center of the shot, but for the most part nothing special. Once again lighting nothing special there either, the movie takes place on a sunny island why would they need special lighting? Speaking of special the effects were non existent unless you consider black and white dream sequences special. Those were some of the most annoying scenes in the whole movie, there really wasn't a smooth transition into those scenes, it was Cage lying on a bed moaning and writhing and then it was black and white and he is back at his traumatizing moment and seeing things from the island, once again these things weren't that scary to begin with. The scariest part of the film was a scene with some bees in it, and it was quite creepy but that was it.
The Wicker Man is not something to take a date to unless you want him/her to fall asleep or never go on another date with you again. Don't even rent this when it comes out on DVD it was that bad.