The Cabin in the Woods

08/29/2015 07:00

Film: The Cabin in the Woods

Year: 2011

Director: Drew Goddard

Writer: Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard

Starring: Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth and Anna Hutchison



This is an interesting film that takes a very meta look at the horror genre, while being a horror film on its own as well. This is one that I took home from Family Video and hated it. I did watch it with an ex and that probably effected me. Since then I’ve seen this a handful of times. I’ve come up from that first viewing by quite a bit. The synopsis is five friends go for a break at a remote cabin, where they get more than they bargained for, discovering the truth behind the cabin in the woods.

This film I found to be quite amazing. There was a great blend of horror and comedy in this one. It develops two different types of things going on. We get two guys that are going to work in a concrete building, similar to that of a power plant-esque. Sitterson (Richard Jenkins) and Hadley (Bradley Whitford) have such great banter back and forth it. It definitely makes me feel like something I would do with guys I work with.

Then on the other side, we have a group of college kids that are going on a vacation for the weekend at Curt’s (Chris Hemsworth) cousin’s new cabin. Coming with them is his girlfriend Jules (Anna Hutchison). Her best friend Dana (Kristen Connolly) is fresh out a relationship with one of her professors. They are being joined by Marty (Fran Kanz), who is a pothead, and Holden (Jesse Williams), who is quite smart and also a football player.

On there why they encounter a creepy guy who runs a gas station, played by Tim DeZarn, who warns them about what they’re going. The interesting thing though is that we learn the men in the inside of the building are controlling what is happening. They direct the teens to do certain things and which influence what comes after them. There is a reason for this, which I absolutely love. It is definitely Lovecraftian.

I’m trying to go a little bit vague here as I don’t want to spoil anything. I’ve probably given more than I should of, but that gives the jist. Something I wanted to bring up, which I can’t full credit is a way to look at this. The process of running this can be looked at like we, the viewing audience, are like what the sacrifices are for. The studios and those making the films could be the men running the experiment and the movie is what is happening to our college kids. I found this theory to be quite interesting. The other way is just that we have horror fans making a horror film for us fans for sure.

The editing of the film is great for me. It blends these two different stories seamlessly together. Once the two collide, it gets even crazier. The film is constantly building tension to the climax, which I love. I also was a big fan of the ending and I thought it was great. It really brings a moral dilemma to figure out what you’d do if you were in their place, face with this decision.

Acting for this film is something else that is great. I really enjoyed Connolly as the ‘virgin’. I thought she brings an interesting combination of fear and strength. She comes into her own and I like the character arch. Hemsworth, Hutchison, Kranz and Williams are all good as well. What I really like is that it establishes who they are, but in the cabin they become the stereotypes we know from horror films. It is amazing to do this. Jenkins and Whitford were really good as well. They play it so well that they have mundane jobs, but the fate of the world rests on them. I thought the rest of the cast round this film out well.

The effects for this film are an interesting blend of CGI and practical. I thought the zombie redneck family that attacks the cabin was great. They looked amazing, in how they walked and looked. There are a few scenes with CGI that actually looked great as well. I thought they put a lot of attention and detail. I had no issues there. There is a bit of it that doesn’t hold up, especially after this last viewing. There isn’t any other way to do it though, I will say that. The blood and gore looked great. This is definitely strong in the film.

I would recommend seeing this film. It definitely is different, but I found it to be one of the best horror films I’ve seen in awhile. If you don’t like comedy blended in with your horror, you might not like this one then. I think it has a definitely deep story that looks at not only us the viewer, but how we see the films we love. In the story, it blends the two different worlds together. It also has a great Lovecraftian feel. The editing definitely keeps the film moving to the climax and the ending, which are both great. I thought the acting is solid across the board. The effects, both practical and CGI are also great. The soundtrack didn’t stand out, but it definitely fit for what it needed. I would say give this one a viewing if this sounds interesting, because I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. I think this is an amazing film.


Rating: 9.5 out of 10