Cabin in the Woods (R) - Runtime: 95 minutes
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Kristen Connolly, Anna Hutchison
Director: Drew Goddard
Writer: Joss Whedon, Drew Goddard
I'm amazed I lasted this long without learning all of the spoilers for this movie. The internet absolutely loves this film and I was hesitant to watch it - I'm not a huge fan of horror movies, but the ones I do enjoy are the ones that are beloved by critics (28 Days Later, The Descent). Now I would categorize this movie more as a comedy (like Shaun of the Dead) than a horror movie. The movie follows a pattern that most horror films follow - but there's a twist! And you could call this twist gimmicky, but what it really does is turn the whole genre on its side. It's a unique (and very meta) take on the genre. While I wouldn't call this movie insanely good - it's completely different than any other ho-hum borefest that claims to be the most frightening thing this year.
The movie isn't afraid to showcase it's twist right from the beginning - Bradley Whitford and Richard Jenkins are two supposedly government employees in charge of killing off some teenagers during their weekend getaway to a cabin in the woods. They have all the latest technology to steer these kids to their doom. And things work out for the most part - but things take a turn for the better for the kids and a turn for the worst for the government employees halfway through the movie.
This an extreme satire of the whole genre - you're continually asking why throughout and when the actual end game is revealed you still have a lot of questions. None of it really makes sense the more you look into the story's logistics, but most horror movies don't make sense, so let's just go with that. What you have is that almost every stereotypical character is mocked and parodied in this movie to the point where it's winking at the camera. And you know what? I like that tongue-in-cheek attitude. It certainly was way more watchable and enjoyable than a Resident Evil film or Silent Hill or Last House on the Left. Like I said from the beginning, this is more of a comedy than a horror film and in that respects, this movie kills.
Let's just face facts: scary movies aren't really scary anymore. They're either about torture and gratuitous amounts of blood and guts. Or they're insanely illogical and anti-climactic. Cabin in the Woods won't scare you, but you'll have a few good laughs and enjoy yourself immensely. Just don't think about the movie too much or you'll get a headache.
Rating: Rent It!