I could have sworn I had heard about “The Cabin in the Woods” 2 years ago while reading some of my favorite movie blogs, but maybe it was a figment of my imagination…. Oh no, it wasn’t… this movie has been sitting on a the shelf for almost 2 year and is just now making its way into theaters to much fan fare. The reason for the delay was the filing of bankruptcy by MGM and the sale of some of their properties. “The Cabin in the Woods” was sold to Lionsgate in July of 2011 and finally had a release date of April 13, 2012. So now that you know a little bit about why the movie was delayed and why people were so anxious to see it, lets talk the movie itself.
If you haven’t seen the movie and you plan to, please don’t read the rest of this post. I’m not going to purposely spoil anything, but I’m not going to keep it spoiler free either. I would also highly suggest that you do not read the plot summary on the wikipedia page for the movie as someone felt like being a dick and put basically the entire movie from beginning to end. You’ve been warned.
First off let me just say that I loved “Cabin in the Woods” for what it is, a funny, smart and highly entertaining horror movie that twists the genre on it’s head. Horror these days has become all about gruesome kills and torture so it’s nice to see a movie that breaks away from the pack. I wasn’t really sure what to expect from the movie based on the trailers though. I wasn’t sure if this was supposed to be grounded in reality or whether it was supposed to be a commentary on our society and reality tv or what. And on top of it, I’m not really a huge fan of Joss Whedon. Ok, I shouldn’t say that, I’ve just never gotten into Buffy, Angel or even Firefly. I have every intention of watching Firefly, I just haven’t gotten around to it. So my gushing over this movie shouldn’t be misconstrued as some sort of Joss Whedon dick-sucking-fest, because I really am not familiar with the guys other work.
So basic premise, 5 stereotypical people in their mid-20’s head out to a family members’ cabin for the weekend where they are eventually hunted down and picked off one-by-one. Sounds like the plot of every other “cabin in the woods”-type movie, but it’s not. There’s much more to it than these kids realize. They are actually being driven towards certain choices by a pair of guys in a command center deep below them. This is the part of the movie that I can see a lot of people getting turned off by. It takes most of what happens at the cabin and turns it on its head, creating more of an unrealistic scenario as opposed to trying to stay grounded. But I promise that if you just take the movie as it comes and don’t expect it to be one thing or another, you will enjoy it. It’s supposed to be fun, entertaining, funny and gruesome all at the same time. Notice how I left “scary” out of there. Yes, it is a horror movie and yes, there are some scary parts, but the overall theme and pacing of the movie isn’t that scary… it’s just plain fun. So take it for what it is and don’t try to make it into something you want it to be or something you expect it to be. That’s the whole point of the movie, it’s not the horror movie you’ve seen re-hashed over and over again of the last 10 years. So if you’re looking for a fresh look at the horror genre that isn’t all about the blood, guts and torture and doesn’t have totally moronic kids running straight into murderous situations, then this movie is just what you’re looking for. It’s sleek, it’s sexy, it’s funny and it’s a lot of fucking fun.