Monday, April 16, 2012

'Cabin in the Woods' Movie Review

I’ll keep this nice and quick. GO SEE “CABIN IN THE WOODS” OR YOU WILL REGRET IT. There.

Here’s something a bit more in depth if you’re so inclined:

Watching “Cabin In the Woods” is like putting together a giant puzzle. You get bits and pieces, but with little or no context, they don’t initially make much sense. However, as the space fills in, pieces come together, and you get an increasingly clear look at the big picture, each reveal becomes a true revelation.

“Cabin in the Woods” is easily the best, funniest, smartest movie I’ve seen this year—not just the best horror movie—and I have a hard time imagining anything topping this long-awaited feature from Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard.

People have been talking about a great deal about the twists in “Cabin in the Woods”, but they aren’t necessarily the twists you expect. Rather than the sudden shifts, disclosures, and changes in direction that so many horror films rely on these days. “Cabin” is really a 95-minute play on genre tropes and types that changes the game for every other horror film to come. These really are some big shoes to fill, and horror, heads up, you’re gonna have to put on your big boy pants to even come close to “Cabin in the Woods”. Better step up your game.

“You think you know the story” has been the big catch phrase in regards to “Cabin in the Woods”. In some way you do. A group of pretty, twenty-something types—a jock, slut, virgin, brain, and stoner—go to for a weekend jaunt at a remote cabin isolated in the woods. Whedon (who produced) and Goddard (who directed) wrote the script together, and turn this typical horror movie plot completely on its ear. They treat the set up with a wry sense of humor and a wink and a nudge as they proceed to skewer all of your favorite horror clich├ęs, from the hillbilly harbinger of doom to the “let’s split up to cover more ground” moment. You can tell how much fun they had writing this script, and the end result is the most inventive movie in recent memory.

I won’t give away too much, “Cabin in the Woods” is best experienced firsthand, and again, I can’t recommend it highly enough. It functions as horror, comedy, and as a deconstructionist essay on genre filmmaking. Remarkably clever, more hilarious than I expected, and gory enough to sate horror fanatics of all varieties, “Cabin in the Woods” sets a new standard that won’t easily be reached.

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