THE CABIN IN THE WOODS
The Cabin in the Woods is probably the most recent film to come out that will be part of this special series of horror reviews. I just watched it and was very surprised. I knew nothing about the movie before seeing it, other than the fact that it was written by Joss Whedon and that it had gotten pretty good reviews. I’m really glad that I knew nothing about the movie before seeing it, so I’ll afford you that luxury as well. Not only is this *SPOILER FREE* but I also won’t tell much about the plot in general.
I found the movie to very, very good, maybe even great. Horror movies that have come out recently tend to suck, but not this one. The movie doesn’t take to long to get going whereas alot of horror movies often spend a good chunk of time with exposition, leaving you with little pay off. This movie gives you plenty of what you want. That being said, there is exposition, but it is necessary exposition, and the movie keeps you entertained during this time, with light comedy, interesting characters, and good acting. Horror movies in general are often plagued with bad acting. Not always the entire cast, but there is usually at least one horrible actor or actress. All of the acting is Cabin in the Woods is solid. The characters are stereotypes, but they are stereotypes for a reason, and they are not carbon copies of the usual horror characters, they are just the same basic group. Whore, Jock, Virgin, Odd Man out, you get the idea.
I really like the stoner character and he makes me think of what if would be like to have Spiccoli from FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH (1982) in a horror movie. You can tell that this movie was made by horror fans and that’s what makes it so great. You can’t expect someone who hates horror movies to make a good horror movie. Writers and directors who love movies, make better movies, That is why a guy like Tarantino is king. He’s quite possibly the biggest film fan alive.
Cabin in the Woods makes fun of and explains some of the oldest horror cliches. It’s great to see a movie acknowledge those cliches and use them effectively. You really don’t have to be a film buff to enjoy this movie, but it is certainly much more enjoyable if you are. It’s is full of references to other horror movies. The movie is almost entirely an EVIL DEAD homage. The location is a cabin just like in ‘Evil Dead’ They went out of their way to make this cabin look just like the one from the other film. They even have the trap door to the cellar with the same staircase. The entire movie has so many references to Evil Dead that at times I almost felt that it went past homage, and went into rip-off territory. There are many little references including the terms “Dedites” (the name for the monsters from ‘Evil Dead’) and “Angry Molesting Tree” (from the famous scene from that film).
The movie pays tribute to so many horror classics and ties it all together in a very interesting way. They even have cameos from some classic icons like: A killer clown, a werewolf, a vampire bat, the grudge, King Kong (KING-F*CKING-KONG) there is even a Clive Barker Cenobite type character, the most famous being Pinhead. He even has the trademark twisty box thingy.
Cabin in the Woods is a film that gives us a refreshing look at the horror genre and that celebrates it at the same time.