Five college friends decide to take a break from their studies to go on a fun filled weekend to a woodland cabin. After a drunken game of truth or dare, the teens come across the basement filled with creepy objects. These objects include old fashioned music boxes, film negatives and a diary written by a masochistic young girl in the 1900s. Things go from creepy to gruesome in a matter of seconds and it is up to the survivors to discover the truth behind the cabin in the woods before it is too late.
Now I know exactly what you are thinking… five college kids go to a remote cabin in the woods where they will be murdered by a psycho. Generic slasher horror stuff right? Well what if I tell you that you are only partly correct? The Cabin in the Woods has the biggest twist that I have ever witnessed in film!
At a first glance, the film embodies everything associated with a teen horror film in the first 10 minutes. There are the generic character archetypes: Jock (Chris Hemsworth), Dumb Blonde (Anna Hutchison), Geek (Jesse Williams), Stoner (Fran Kranz) and Good Girl (Kristen Connolly). Then you have the generic storyline, the five mismatched friends go on a nice weekend away to an isolated cabin the woods. Everything about this structure screams a conventional horror film. However, the safe slasher horror turns unexpected and experimental pretty much as soon as the teens reach the cabin.
Along with the imagery of the teens in the cabin, the spectator is shown what looks like a laboratory with two middle aged white American males talking idly about their lives. As a spectator, the confusion should set in at this moment. How does this civilised laboratory scene fit with the expected horror film? Well without given too much away, let’s just say that this film is a mash up between The Hunger Games and Saw… The laboratory workers are much more than they seem.
The dark comedy that comes at the hands of stoner Marty showcases a Joss Whedon script. The writer who wrote the screenplay for Toy Story and Avengers Assemble is known to add witty and clever one liners into the most hopeless of scripts and kudos go to Whedon for this script in particular. The gags add that very needed light-hearted relief to this gruesome narrative.
Right, so far we have this teen slasher horror where five conventional characters are getting picked off one by one to face the most disturbing of deaths. Then we get to 20 minutes until the end and everything just goes absolutely bonkers. Blood covering every surface and a short, pointless performance by Sigourney Weaver, the general reaction from the audience was “this is just ridiculous!” and then BAM… the award for the biggest twist in film history goes to THE CABIN IN THE WOODS! *Crowd goes wild*.
Without giving too much away Goddard and Whedon take every horror clichÃƒ© that has been replayed in films on countless occasions and flip them on their head to create a general “WTF” reaction from the audience.
Probably one of the most clever horror films I have seen!
Full to the brim with blood and gore and a few cheap gags added for some light-hearted relief, this film is not for the weak stomached! Goddard? The prop department called… they want their blood back!