No really, come back here. This is no April Fool's joke, I swear. Just stop being such a Kanye and lemme finish.....
Like you - if you're sane and awesome, that is - I adore The Wicker Man. Yes, I'm talking about Robin Hardy's 1973 masterpiece, which saw the late Edward Woodward match moral wits with Christopher Lee on a strange potentially pagan island. It is undoubtedly one of the most uinque, fascinating, intriguing, and memorable films ever made. I need to be clear from the start here: I am in no way endorsing the idea that this version of The Wicker Man is a) a good remake of that film or b) a good movie. But as its release nears a five year anniversary, I'd be remiss not to point out what the film has become.
I got a few answers, most notably Tommy Wiseau's The Room, Uwe Boll's House of the Dead, The Happening, The Love Guru, and Ax 'Em. At the same time, I was surprised to find that no one mentioned Birdemic: Shock and Terror, as I assumed it and The Room (which is actually from 2003, but became popular recently) to dominate the voting. Along the way, I had most certainly already planned to cast my vote for LaBute's vision of The Wicker Man.
Like Plan 9, the film's flaws - primarily regarding Cage's delivery of lines like "HOW'D IT GET BURNED? HOW'D IT GET BURNED?" and "NOT THE BEES! NOT THE BEES!!!" and the amount of spinkicks and bear-suited beatdowns he delivers to these freaky communal women - have become their own kind of beast and taken over several corners of nerd culture. The former Mystery Science Theater 3000 crew quickly took a shot at the film through their Rifftrax enterprise, while animated gifs of Cage's bear suit antics quickly spread across message boards. When YouTube became a sensation, clips of the film - including remixes of Cage's dialogue and hordes of imitators followed. LaBute's film was even extended for DVD, letting in the now infamous "Not the Bees" - which was only heard and not seen in the theatrical version - loose upon us all.
Most fault Cage for where this Wicker Man ended up, and it's hard to defend his performance. But I like to look at Cage's performance like I would look at the performance of a quarterback who's down by 30 points in the first quarter. He had nothing to lose once things were out of control, and he had to finish the game. Cage seems to be trying his hardest to make each line he reads seem increasingly dramatic and powerful, but the audience's interest is already gone from the derivative story, poor pacing, and ridiculous characters. Cage is left as the most talented sailor on a sinking ship, and his frantic attempts to save the proceedings look comical to the onlooker who already knows that all are doomed. Quite frankly, I don't think Nic Cage - as over-the-top as he is - is this movie's problem. In fact, he's probably the best thing that could have happened to it; it'd be a footnote in remake history without his performance.
Again - this is a really, really, ridiculously bad movie. I just finished rewatching it for this post, and I kind of want to call the whole thing off and say "Y'know what, eff The Wicker Man remake. That flick is the worst thing I've ever seen". But that's the beauty of a movie that's truly so bad it's good. It leaves you intrigued by how anyone could get things so wrong, charmed by the ridiculous unintentional humor that's trapped within, and completely exhausted by how bad the whole thing is. Those are the same feelings I get when I watch Plan 9 From Outer Space, and they are echoed completely by Neil LaBute's The Wicker Man. And, as much as I hate to admit it, I kind of love the fact that a film can do that to me.
Long live the bees!
(By the way, I need to know - How DID it get burned??????)