The Cabin In The Woods
- Director:Drew Goddard
- Cast:Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison, Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford
- Release Date:June 14, 2012
- Running time:95 minutes
- Film Worth:$15.00
- FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth
A top-notch cast and behind-the-camera talent manage to inject smarts and originality into an initially conventional horror set-up.
You'd think that sixteen years after the post-modern smarts of Scream and thirteen years of Blair Witch Project-inspired found-footage scares that someone would've found a new way to reinvent the modern American horror movie. Ill-judged attempts have resulted in tasteless monster mash-ups like Freddy Vs Jason, and an endless batch of remakes and irrelevant prequels of genre classics - though it must be acknowledged that the recent horror-comedy, Tucker & Dale Vs Evil, was an often hilarious self-parody.
Therefore, it's initially uninspiring to find five horror movie stereotypes accidentally unearthing an ancient curse at the heart of The Cabin In The Woods. Kudos, then, goes to producer/co-writer, Joss "The Boss" Whedon, for injecting new life into this apparently tired and tested set-up by finding an inventive way to subvert the genre with a re-twist of the dreaded knife of horror, and a very acute Big Brother eye. Enlisting frequent writer/producer, Drew Goddard (Lost, Cloverfield), as (first time) director is a smart move, as is securing a, then, pre-Thor (and thus pre-The Avengers) Chris Hemsworth in the archetypal alpha male role. But perhaps more impressive casting comes with character actors Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford, brilliantly hamming it up as a pair of wisecracking suits with sinister motives.
Although much secrecy surrounds the intricate plot, The Cabin In The Woods at least partially reveals itself within the first fifteen minutes (or sooner depending on the eagle-eyed viewer), leaving the mystery-shrouded truth-behind-the-grand-scheme-of-things reveal to be disclosed at the very end by an aptly cast (if frequently forever cameo-ing) former genre queen. The trouble is that before this slightly pretentious introduction, we have had the very fulfilling prospect of virtually every conceivable horror movie beastie thrown our way, in addition to being treated to an almighty bloodthirsty climax. A largely by-the-numbers twist, therefore, is somewhat defeating by comparison.