Because of the disappearance of her daughter policeman Edward Malus follows the cry for help of his ex-girlfriend Willow, after a terrible accident on the highway had caused him a severe trauma that lasted for months. The trace leads to the isolated island Summersisle somewhere on the northwest-coast of the USA. The people living there have a strange presence to them, shaping their lives after old archaic traditions and mocking him because of his investigations on the missing girl Rowan. Determined to make up for his further mistakes, Malus digs deeper into the secrets of the community gathered around a mysterious leader (Ellen Burstyn). But with that he also approaches his own doom, for the center of the archaic religion is the annual "Wicker Man"...
Apart from the bar scene contained in the Theatrical Version and the longer, more explicit sacrificing scene contained in the Unrated, the two versions do not differ. The US-DVD from Warner contains both versions.
Unrated: 01:41.54 Min. NTSC incl. ending credits
Theatrical Version: 01:37.50 Min. PAL incl. ending credits
Time index UR: 00.15
Logo: "Alcon Entertainment"
Time index TV: 00.36
Logo: "Emmett/Furla Films"
Time index UR: 00.56
Time index TV: 00.53
Time index UR: 01:30.41
After Edward has freed Rowan and tries to escape with her through the woods, she secretly leads him back to the villagers. Now follows a short dialogue between the leader and Edward, in which she explains to him that he was the chosen sacrifice all along. Then Edwards gets caught by the mob. Now the Theatrical Version blends over to Willows sad face.
The scene continues in the Unrated. Edward calls the women bitches as they hold him down. He exclaims that they are committing a senseless murder that will not help them get their honey back.
Sister Summersisle says that she knows that it will be so. The women place his legs onto two wooden stumps, before a man joins the scene and smashes Edwards kneecaps with a hammer. Edward screams in pain. Than another man puts some sort of helmet on Edwards head, and bees are being poured into the helmet. Edward screams until he eventually passes out. The helmet is taken off his head and one of the women gives him an injection to prevent him from dying of an anaphylactic shock. Now follows the cut to Willows face in the Unrated.
Everything until the breaking of the legs is audible from the off in the Theatrical Version, as the villagers walk over to the ceremonial sacrificing ground.
Time index TV: 01:31.01
While the movie ends after the burning of Edward in the Unrated, it continues in the Theatrical Version.
In a town two young men are sitting in a bar noticing two pretty women - Willow and Honey. They're flirting and Willow takes one of the men to the bar. Honey and the other one (James Franco) remain sitting at the table. As they continue to flirt, Honey asks him, whether he will take her home with him when he leaves. He just smiles. Close-up of Honeys face - in the background we hear the buzzing of bees and Edwards last horrible scream.