A parodical horror film cleverly/[irreverently]-satirizing horror movies with playful nods to tropes/genre flaws, Joss Whedon’s Cabin In The Woods is a visionary postmodern meta-film treat amongst the most self-aware in pop culture to-date. 8.7/10.
Plot Synopsis: You know the setup: five college friends (Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison, Fran Kranz, Jesse Williams) jounrey out to a cabin in the woods for a weekend vacation, only to come across horror happenings. However, there is something else at play here as the horror is being controlled and manipulated by onlookers. As the body count rises, the friends realize that there is more at play than meets the eye.
*Possible spoilers ahead*
Pros: Intriguing set up that does not play like most horror set-ups, playfully pokes fun at the genre with the most stereotypical horror movie setup ever with a group of teens heading out to a cabin in the woods for the weekend, great cast with Kristen Connolly (<3), Kate Mara, Chris Hemsworth, etc., well-written characters you can actually invest in, pacing, and storyline by Joss Whedon, beautiful woods shots and cinematography, hilarious jokes too satirizing the horror genre, winks at conspiracy theorists too by having this conspiracy actually true, love how they rewrite otherwise smart and non-horror characters into characters, good horror scenes like the forest Jules scene, hilarious nods to horror movie tropes and stupid decisions like when they realize all horror movies basically solved by sticking together but are stimulated to “decide” to split up, some surprising jump scares, imaginative and genius in that it takes something so simple as a setup for like every horror movie ever and completely turns it on his head with something no one could have ever seen coming, gives you a glimpse of every type of horror movie monster which is extremely satisfying to genre fans who will have fun seeing the movies they were from, thrilling ending as Dana and Marty discover the headquarters, extremely satisfying ending showing every type of movie monster simultaneously in one of the most ambitious horror endings ever, brisk pacing and respectably not-too-long length at 1hr30 min in a world plagued by 2hr30-3 hr overlong movies, stylish ending that goes against the stereotypical cheesy ending of the easy sacrifice we all saw coming, one of the most self-aware yet unapologetically postmodern and meta-films that is boldly willing to push the boundaries of entertainment and what is possible in the genre, epic scale, reality show and entertainment angle very clever poking fun at modern society and its tropes as well
Cons: Cabin a little too small and not great to look at (could’ve made it look way better with what I’m sure is a great budget esp with that title), some questionable choices like the wolf make-out scene and a unicorn in the ending, wish they would’ve picked a better angle than zombies as it doesn’t go very well with the forest and cabin angle, not really that scary even though it’s trying to make a larger visionary point and genre statement, dark comedy and plot understandably not be for everyone but for people complaining about horror movies’ basic-ness and lack of originality nowadays: HERE YOU GO
Official CLC Score: 8.7/10