Some movies are easier to review than others, naturally. Reviewing a bad movie can come effortlessly at times, while reviewing a movie that has disappointed or even left me undecided can be a labor. The Cabin in the Woods is a dificult film to review for many reasons. I’ll start by saying that you probably haven’t seen anything like it. If you think you have, then I would love a ticket to the mythical place that you wake up in each morning where cows milk themselves into chocolate goblets and girlfriends, instead of complaining, shit video games, malt liquor and logic. Quite simply, in a world where very little is new, Cabin manages to be crisp and refreshing while using the same conventions that have characterized the genre industry for decades. Its hard to review something that creates its own categories, and, in essence redefines those that it once might have personified.
Cabin is metafiction, satire, homage and critique. It is self aware, innocent, smart, cliche and overall very, VERY satisfying. What is also going to come as a surprise after reading this is that Cabin in the Woods represents a horror movie that many will not call a horror movie, yet, if a horror fan were to write a checklist of everything they would love to see in a film, Cabin is going to walk away with a smug grin.
To start with its premise is to undermine the crux of Cabin’s resourceful inventiveness. To be fair though lets just say that five college students set off on a weekend trip to a remote cabin…and then everything that you think happens does… AND doesn’t. Cabin doesn’t pull the rug out from under you or grab Charlie Brown’s footbal moments before he kicks it. Instead, it grabs the rug and then uses it to beat the hell outta the whole Peanuts gang while you hold on for dear life.
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