I know. I’m about a year overdue for seeing this movie. I’m not really into horror movies, so I kind of wrote it off as something I didn’t need to see. I’ve never been so glad to have been proved wrong before.
Cabin in the Woods is your typical, five-friends-stranded-in-the-woods horror movie. Until three deaths in and even the victims start to have second thoughts about what’s really going on here. Behind the scenes an underground agency is manipulating the situation to appease an ancient god that demands blood sacrifice. Once this plot is uncovered by the remaining victims even more blood and gore ensues.
For one thing, the cast. Bradley Whitford, Amy Acker, and Fran Kranz are all favorites, and I’m always surprised and delighted to see Tom Lenk show up in however small a way. Others that I didn’t know as well, didn’t disappoint. Seeing these people in roles I’d have never thought of outside of this, yet some with a flicker of familiarity.
While, I should have expected nothing less from Joss Whedon and Drew Goodard, I was really impressed with the twist. There are so many levels to this idea of watching people being tortured. For one thing, in absorbing this message while watching the movie, you’re also watching people being tortured.
There are so many little nuances of irony in this movie that I almost can’t even wrap my head around them. Bradley Whitford’s character dies by merman, a creature he’s been rooting for the whole time. The multitude of horror movie references that I understood only through general pop culture knowledge or from the internet explaining them to me.
Not to mention the idea that there is an underground being who can only be sated by the death of five archetypes. This has haunting implications on our own world. What kind of power demands sacrifices of innocents? If this power is real – in actuality or in metaphor – what sacrifices does it demand of us? Our time, skills, and money? And what kinds of effect does it have to give in to this perceived power?
But to step away from the possible soapbox, Cabin in the Woods was a surprising step out from the typical horror movie. Filled with twists and brimming with irony, I’m surprising myself to say that I recommend it.
Are you a horror movie fan? Have you seen Cabin in the Woods? Love it or hate it?