Don’t expect many scares from “The Wicker Man”

If you are going to a movie theater this week to get a good scare then don’t waste your money on “The Wicker Man.” A remake of the 1973 classic “The Wicker Man” shows why Hollywood remakes don’t always go smoothly. Starring Nicholas Cage, the movie promises goose bumps and shock but instead delivers laughs due to the ridiculousness of the plot and the acting. The plot basically revolves around a quiet cop by the name of Edward Malus (Cage) who suffers from depression and nightmares after failing to save a little girl from a burning car. When Cage gets a letter from ex-fiancée Willow, played by Kate Beahan (“Flightplan”), about her missing daughter he drops what he is doing and goes to help. This is where the plot thickens or gets more ridiculous depending on how you look at it. Willow lives on Summer’s Isle, a privately owned island in the Pacific Northwest that is just a little bit different from the normal world. Cage has to take a boat and then a flight just to get to the island then finds out that the island is basically like an Amish settlement with no electricity. But unlike the Amish, these natives are not the nicest people. Summer’s Isle is populated by a multitude of women. The island is run by women, and women are the only people who are educated. The men are basically tools for reproduction and work, and cannot even speak English or any language. This may just be the perfect movie for women’s rights… okay maybe not. I doubt women would enjoy being portrayed as crazy gals living on an island with no electricity or shoe shops. The island holds many secrets, though, including the location of the little girl and whether she’s still alive or not. But Cage has plenty of difficulty getting these women to spill the beans as many of the women will not even admit to knowing the little girl. Seems they are busy preparing for the coming of the Wicker Man. This all may sound boorish and it is. The movie lacks any truly scary moments. If you have seen the commercials and seen the tractor trailer hitting the station wagon that holds the little girl then you have seen the only scary part of the movie, and be prepared to see that scene at least five more times during the movie. While disappointing, “The Wicker Man” does have some good moments, but not on purpose. Cage’s character is over the top as he takes meds, freaks out, and generally has no clue what he is doing much of the time. This does make for a very comical performance by Cage, but of course it’s not meant to be that way. Throughout much of Cage’s performance you are just waiting for Daniel Powter’s song “You’ve Had a Bad Day” to play. In the end you really feel sorry for him having to deal with the great number of crazy females in the movie, but of course after dropping five bucks to see the movie you can’t really feel too bad for him. If you are looking for a scary movie “The Wicker Man” isn’t what you are looking for. If you are looking for a movie that displays women in positions of power and men that go crazy and lose their mind then this might be the movie for you. My suggestion would be to skip the movie theater altogether and hit the rental store to check out the original 1973 version with Christopher Lee and Edward Woodward.