Monday, October 27, 2014

Movie Review: "The Cabin in the Woods" (2012)

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Movie"The Cabin in the Woods"
Director: Drew Goddard
Year: 2012
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 35 minutes

Two men named Sitterson (Richard Jenkins) and Hadley (Bradley Whitford) are at work starting their daily grind. They work for the American chapter of an international company that performs human sacrifices to placate ancient gods. The sacrifice this time around is a group of 5 friends: Curt (Chris Hemsworth), Jules (Anna Hutchinson), Holden (Jesse Williams), Marty (Fran Kranz), and Dana (Kristen Connelly). They are heading up to a cabin in the woods owned by Curt's cousin. It is at this cabin they will face their fate and unknowingly chose the manner in which they are to be sacrificed.  

You ain't seen nothin' until you've seen "Cabin in the Woods."

This is a highly original horror film that pokes fun at  pretty much every cliche found in the horror film genre. It makes an attempt to explain that all of the cliches are due to outside manipulation by this company who stacks the deck the best they can against the unsuspecting group of friends. They use drugs, pheromones, creepy actors, and good old fashion explosives, among other things, to control the outcome the best they can, within the rules, being meticulous as not to break them. The victims must die in a specific order and things must be done in a certain way in order to appease the ancient gods. They imply that basically every horror film ever made is actually part of this greater ritual and is controlled by this one company. Each character is manipulated out of their actual selves to fit their respective horror stereotypes. The group of friends ultimately consists of a jock, a slut, the intelligent one, a goofball, and a virgin, well, in a manner of speaking. How much more cliche can you get?!

Though this film is, at its core, a satire, it is still a rather fun horror with plenty of blood and guts to go around for gore fans. The final battle royale at the end of the movie pits monsters against their captors as the members of the company fight against what they have been controlling up until all hell breaks loose. It is also pretty damn funny and uniquely intelligent. We really like how the friends are driven down into the basement and made to inadvertently pick their own deaths while those within the company bet on what fate the friends will choose for themselves. 

We appreciate the attempt by filmmakers to make this movie as original as possible but still keeping its story and themes within the genre of horror itself. There are also plenty many homages to the genre's flicks that came before it, nods from the proverbial horror past, from wolfman to a cenobite. The laughs are a-plenty, the amount of blood spilled is high, and the build-up to the ultimate climax of the film is a fun, cleverly smart, weird and wild ride.

My Rating: 9/10
BigJ's Rating: 9/10
IMDB's Rating: 7.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 91%
Do we recommend this movie: ABSOLUTELY YES!!
One year ago, we were watching"Twixt"

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