The Cabin in the Woods

Dog Kissing! Ewww!

 

It’s date night and the old dinner and a movie dilemma crops up.  For most couples the problem is chick flick vs. action film.  For Dani and me it’s simply a matter of finding a movie either of us would like to see.  We’re both horror fans and B movie junkies (Envy me guys. She doesn’t like chick flicks).  A lovely night out for us would be Chinese food and a Charles Band double feature.  Puppet Master Goes to Camp, anyone? Nothing was playing at the local multiplexes that looked good.  The only horror film out that weekend was The Cabin in the Woods.  Hmmm.

I had seen previews for The Cabin in the Woods. It looked like the typical five twenty-somethings go to a secluded location for recreational sex and boozing. There is also a twist. I know this because the trailer titles keep telling me that the movie they are trying to get me to see, well, it really isn’t the movie they are trying to get me to see.  Confused? Me too. I’m jaded too. I don’t believe anything the trailer is telling about this movie.  I’m expecting it to be very samey.

 

Me: Dani, wanna go see a movie tonight?

Dani: Sure. What do you want to see?

Me: I dunno.  What do you want to see?

Dani: I don’t know what’s out. What do you want to see?

Me: You pick.

Dani: ” . . . ”

Me: Well, the only horror movie out now  is The Cabin in the Woods.

Dani: What’s that about?

Me: Five generic horror characters go to a cabin in the woods  . . .  then stuff happens.

Dani: What kind of stuff? Like Evil Dead? Like Cabin Fever? Like Friday the 13th?

Me: Yes. No. Maybe. It’s about five generic horror characters go to a cabin in the woods  . . .  then stuff happens.

Dani: “. . . ”

 

We decide that even if the movie is as bad as it looks at first blush, at least we can have a good time making jokes about it (Watch for my upcoming whinge about The Devil Inside for that).

Before writing this, I had noticed several long threads about this movie on various forums I frequent.  I didn’t read any of those posts.  All I knew was that the film received rather high marks for a “five victims, one cabin” story. I’m glad that I had no idea about that I was getting into.  I don’t want to ruin any of it for you, so I will spare you the plot’s details.

Here was what you need to know:  The Cabin in the Woods is a smart horror-comedy made by fans of the horror genre, for fans of the horror genre.  Unlike the Scary Movie films, which were made by people who think farts are funny, for people who think farts are funny, The Cabin in the Woods is more an homage to horror films of the last thirty years or so, rather than an out and out parody, The scope of the film extends very cleverly beyond the titular cabin bringing in an external plotline that merges with the main “five victims and a cabin” story.

The Cabin in the Woods is funny.  It’s clever. It’s entertaining.  If you are reading this, you will enjoy the movie.

I want to mention Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford because supporting role actors such as these two rarely get a chance to upstage the pretty young things that Hollywood like to push.  I totally loved both of their performances.   Tim De Zarn is also a hoot.

Disclaimer: This movie was penned, in part, by Joss Whedon.  I am NOT a Whedon fanboy. I recommend The Cabin in the Woods on its own merits.

 

Starring:

Bradley Whitford

Richard Jenkins

Tim De Zarn

Kristen Connolly

Chris Hemsworth

 

Director:

Drew Goddard

 

Screenplay:

Drew Goddard

Joss Whedon

 

Three out of five Vincents

4 Responses to “The Cabin in the Woods”

  • Vemundpemundkallevallevinkelstinkelstemund:

    This has got to be a hard movie to review. One wrong word, and you kind of spoil all of it. Me, I found it clever and neat, but not quite as awesome as some of the hype made it out to be. Still, worth a watch.

    • Captain Midnight:

      It’s tricky. After seeing the movie I went back and looked at the marketing for it. Selling this movie without giving things away was an unenviable task. I suspect the over-hype from certain quarters is the Joss Whedon fanboys whooping it up.

  • TreverT:

    This sounds exactly like how I felt when I had to write a review of Triangle. Utterly, totally impossible to review without somehow dealing with the central twist of the film, and if you do so you’ll completely blow the awesomeness of it for those are go in with no expectations. It’s hard to write a coherent review that consists of nothing more than, “Go see this because I said so.”

    • Captain Midnight:

      Yeah, and “go see this because I said so” isn’t much of a review. Which is why I tried to give sense of what I thought or didn’t think about the movie going in and how I feel about after the fact. Some movie are just difficult. Ironically, I avoid reading reviews before seeing a movie. I want to enjoy watching the story unfold.

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