Monday, September 24, 2007
I finally saw The Wicker Man - the 1973 version. I must have been distracted in the early seventies because I only became aware of this film in recent years when people started saying it was the greatest this or that. Well, it is good, but, as with all Anthony Schaffer plots, it's far too neat and tidy. For the real, bloody, shocking thing, see Michael Reeves' Witchfinder General. Wicker also looked quaint - even Britt Ekland's naked writhing had a naughty, seventies air about it. (Actually - another Effie moment here - it wasn't Britt, it was a body double.) This quaintness suggests to me that the current enthusiasm for the movie is an aspect of the seventies revival which seems to be taking place. Life on Mars explicitly portrayed the seventies as a more authentic, though more brutal, time. And now we have Tarantino making a grindhouse movie. There's also a lot of seventies-esque architecture and design around. And, to seal this argument, one of our leading trendsetters, style gurus and fashion statements - me - will move into a seventies flat later this week. I suspect this is all about nostalgia for a harder-edged, more vividly coloured time, a dangerous time but one which offered clearer identities. In the seventies, it was possible to know exactly who you were.
Posted by Bryan Appleyard at 7:47 am