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Headscratchers / The Wicker Man (2006)

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  • While I admit to only seeing the clip from the remake of "No, not the bees!", it strikes me as kind of stupid. If people are pouring a funnel of bees onto your face shouldn't you try keeping your eyes and mouth closed, rather than shouting with your mouth wide open?
    • Well, given that he was allergic/phobic of bees (can't remember exactly what) he was probably freaked out beyond rational thought.
    • He had also just had his legs broken, and the pain probably didn't help.
  • This troper only saw the infamous remake but this probably applies to the original as well: the cultists are aware that they killed a police officer, right? One who was shown informing his superior where he was going? Good luck hoping for a better harvest, because you ain't getting it, albeit for reasons unrelated to agriculture/apiculture...
    • He wasn't a wildly popular police officer, with his colleagues...
      • Wildly popular or not, the OP has a point; police officers don't tend to like it when their colleagues get murdered and tend to pull out all the stops in investigating / bringing the killer to justice, if only because a failure to do so sends the message that you can get away with killing a police officer.
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    • In the original at least there's nothing from before he landed on the island, for all we know no one knew where he was going.
    • In the remake, where does it show him informing a superior? He was on vacation and had absolutely no official police business. He attempted to tell his friend shortly before arriving, but the signal cut out. No one knew and he had no jurisdiction.
      • In the extended edition, he gets a letter from an anonymous person from Summerisle asking him to come and investigate. He gets the letter from a fellow officer. Even if that wasn't a good enough lead, remember, he's a cop. If a cop is going somewhere on duty, as a matter of process he/she will report on where they're going and why, especially if they're going out of town. Cops are thorough that way. And even if for some reason he didn't do that, he flew there. He would've had to plot his course before leaving, and at some point he would have to be in communication with some form of air traffic control, who would have records of where he was headed. Take your pick, someone had to know where he was going.
      • Since all the villagers were in it together, all they had to do was all memorise a simple story 'Oh Howie, yes he came here. He looked for the girl. We told him was dead, look, he's all the documentation. He went back home" Good luck trying to break down that story.
      • Well, except for the fact that Howie himself is both MISSING and DEAD (which means that bullshit stories about him simply going back home aren't gonna fly). Seriously, if a guy goes to a place, and then completely disappears off the map, people are gonna get suspicious about said place. If nothing else, rumors will spread, and people will avoid the island like it has the plague. Hell, the police might send in a full and better-prepared squad (complete with radio for contacting the outside world in case anything goes wrong) if the island is ever involved again in a missing persons case.
      • He flew in on a tiny seaplane. Those things have accidents all the time *wink, wink*
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    • Howie briefly brings this up before his sacrifice in the original, and Lord Summerisle responds with "there will be no traces". So the villagers have some cover-up planned.
    • He's on an island. If he "went fishing" in a crappy rowboat then it would be easily plausible if the body were never found.
    • You need some form of physical evidence to prove a murder. Howie carried the letter and photo to the island with him (who knows what he did with the envelope?). When they took his clothes to anoint him, the letter and photo were probably within those, and were probably burned. Plus, the ashes of the wicker man after it was burned were probably buried, or thrown into the sea. The police just couldn't show up and say, "We know you murdered Howie". You need proof, or a confession - and considering how difficult the islanders were making Howie's original investigation, the latter would've required some form of torture.
      • The circumstantial evidence would be overwhelming. Edward went to an island of super suspicious neo-pagan cultists and disappeared while searching for a missing little girl, which is easily enough to warrant an full investigation and probably the arrest of Summersisle. And even if they removed the ashes, there would still be plenty of evidence remaining to prove that there was a large structural fire in the area.
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    • Beyond that, the women seemed to target men that are in traditionally masculine jobs like police officers or firefighters. They also want men who are drawn towards helping others, especially damsels in distress and lost children.
  • I think the point of this entire exercise is: the villagers very likely screwed themselves over.
    • Yeah that was my interpretation too. They're not getting their harvest and they're pretty much all going to jail.
  • "Here lies [name I forget], protected by the ejaculation of serpents". Is uh, is this supposed to be literal? Because this is really bugging me.
    • Simplifying a bit, druids were said to carry magic amulets which protected them from harm. The amulets, supposedly, were made from the ejaculation of serpents, solidified, which the druids had to steal from said serpents in a protracted and difficult fashion. Presumably, it means she was buried with such an amulet. Or, you know, someone just thought it would sound cool to say so.
    • Ejaculation also has a religious meaning, as in "an ejaculatory prayer". There's a very good article about its use in Catholicism here. If serpents really are a metaphor for druids (something to do with serpent tattoos), then Beech Buchanan was protected by their frequent prayers.
  • The accident at the beginning of the remake: Was there a point to that at all, other than to give Edward a reason to be mentally off the rest of the movie?
    • Standard Redemption-Quest stuff: He couldn't save that girl from burning to death but now he has been given a second chance to save Rowan from a similar fate.
  • There might not be much worth thinking over about the remake, but it does seem likely that the choice of the bees as a divine symbol has much to do with the female bees being active and dominant while the males exist only for reproduction which is symbolised in this matriarchical society. Anyway let's talk about the original film.
  • In the original, Howie is a virgin, making him perfect for the sacrifice, and sleeping with Willow would've gotten him out of it. In the remake, Malus fathers a child with the woman who lures him to the island. How can the already-smacked around remake get what turned out to be a huge detail in the original so wrong?
    • Never mind; I read about it myself.
  • Why does Willow look concerned and worried about Rowan during his torture and demise? She made it clear she cared more about the honey harvest.
    • You mean Edward? And she always looks worried, it's her default expression.
  • In the classroom, why do the kids say "phallic symbol" twice?
    • It wasn't so much an answer to an actual question as a chant.
    • To show off the Hive Mind perhaps?
  • Why does Edward even agree to look for his ex-girlfriend's missing daughter in the first place? She's his ex-girlfriend so obviously he doesn't much care for her. He could easily say no and cite conflict of interest since an officer investigating a case where their ex is involved might just half-ass it since there's a bias in place.
    • ...Are you suggesting Edward would willingly let a little girl be in danger just because of a personal issue he has with her mother? It would be a bit out of character for him to just not try to save her if there was a possibility she was being hurt or worse, even if he didn't care for her mother.


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