Spooky season is upon us and we’re reveling in it with a folk horror double-bill of Night of the Demon (1957) x The Wicker Man (1973)
Night of the Demon (1957) Jacques Tourneur’s tale of contemporary witchcraft. Noir stalwart, Dana Andrews stars as an American professor brought to London for a parapsychology conference. Once there, he is pulled into an investigation surrounding a satanic cultist and the diabolical force he may have conjured. Night of the Demon remains a folk-horror essential, a slow-burning chiller, peppered with irony and sly humor, about witchcraft in modern England.
The Wicker Man (1973) Robin Hardy’s cult classic. Sergeant Neil Howie makes his way to Summerisle in search of a missing girl. On the remote Hebridean island known for its delicious apples and ruled by Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee), Howie’s conservative viewpoint is rattled by the locals’ pagan sensibilities – and their claim that the girl never existed. Howie is convinced that he is the girl’s only hope as the island’s curious preparations for May Day begin. The Wicker Man remains fantastical 40+ years on.