The Cabin in the Woods (2012)

Drew Goddard

Kristen Connolly - Dana Polk
Chris Hemsworth - Curt Vaughan
Anna Hutchison - Jules Louden
Fran Kranz - Marty Mikalski
Jesse Williams - Holden McCrea

Genre - Horror/Comedy

Running Time - 95 Minutes

Normally, you would see the normal format with PLOT and REVIEW here. But it takes a special kind of film to throw that out entirely. And THE CABIN IN THE WOODS is that film. Reviewing it and discussing it in depth would just ruin it for those reading who are interested and/or haven't watched it yet. Let's just say that the posters and trailers really don't show you much of anything of what the film is really about - and that's a great thing. THE CABIN IN THE WOODS is an experience and an interesting way to look at horror films past, present, and even future.

Even though I won't discuss the plot, I will say that Joss Whedon has done it again with his screenplay [which was co-written by director Drew Goddard]. I went into THE CABIN IN THE WOODS expecting a pretty normal horror-comedy with the usual twist at the end to cap it all off. But I was pleasantly surprised by the twists, turns, and the usage of the cliche conventions horror films have grown stale by that were turned on their head to become witty, clever, and almost unrecognizable. Every time I thought the film would go one way, it went to a totally different direction I could not see coming. The film repeatedly does this and you realize that this horror film is a lot smarter and different from the usual suspects. The characters are stereotypical on paper, but due to the situation presented, are given a ton of depth and are very likeable. Even the antagonist(s) is/are really well-written. I also loved the homages to other classic horror films and characters. Sure it had plot holes here and there [supposedly done purposely for a planned sequel in mind], but they never really bugged me while watching. I was on a ride and I had fun. That's all that matters.

The direction by Drew Goddard, who also wrote CLOVERFIELD, is great. Lots of stylish shots. Cinematography by Peter Deming was great. The pace was fast, as the film just builds and builds until its finale. The editing was fantastic and clever, jarring the audience from going to one scene to a totally different one in form of juxtaposition. The action sequences are exciting, while the murder sequences [while not scary] are a bit creepy and tense. It's not an overly gory film [until the end] but it's more than enough to satisfy those who have a blood lust when it comes to horror. There are a lot of subtle fourth wall references that are visually presented as well, which makes the viewing audience a lot of fun. THE CABIN IN THE WOODS could have gone off the rails due to its complex narrative. But Goddard manages a tight ship and should be commended and respected for putting together a visual feast.

The acting is more than solid here. Each actor and actress play their part to a tee. There are definitely highlights, which I won't share due to this review being a non-spoiler. But all the people involved 'got it' and played to it extremely well. No one in this cast bugged me. They all had a purpose and were great in making it happen. There's also a great cameo in the final act as well.

THE CABIN IN THE WOODS is said by some to be the end of how we look at horror films. But I feel it's a new beginning of a genre that definitely needed a kick in the ass to make studios and audiences realize that there's still a lot of originality left to create something different for true horror fans. Whedon and Goddard have crafted an incredibly smart and inventive film with sharp satire that's clever. It didn't scare me in the slightest, but it sure made me laugh at how genius the premise was. The less you know about THE CABIN IN THE WOODS, the better you are. This film is an experience that will surprise you in a good way. I 'got' what this film was trying to express and I appreciated it. I don't think I could recommend a modern horror film as much as THE CABIN IN THE WOODS. Dammit, I want to visit this one again now. So, so good.

4 Howls Outta 4


  1. Fantastic film. I know the phrase is a little silly and overplayed but I don't give a shit: it's an instant classic.

  2. Agreed! Expect my review tomorrow! I'm going to try and avoid major plot points, but damn it, thats going to be hard. I agree, the less you know about this one the better. I am interrupting my Post Apocalyptic month just to review Cabin in the Woods, loved it to death.

  3. I'm so glad most of the horror [and film community in general] loved this film. It deserves all the appreciation and support it can get. Definitely a DVD/Blu-Ray buy.

  4. It’s funny and witty at times, and it has some decent jolts here and there. It’s also pretty clear from The Cabin in the Woods that co-writers Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard love horror movies almost as much as they are annoyed by them, and the fun they had making this film comes out onto its audience. Good review Fred.

  5. Wow! I've heard nothing but great things about this movie. I guess I'll check it out despite my weird feeling about it. :)

  6. why are you Americans so lucky?! THIS FILIPINO WANTS TO SEE IT, NAO!


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