Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Entertainment Reviews

April 25, 2012

‘Cabin in the Woods’ rare sign of life in horror genre

Movie Review

Pauls Valley, Oklahoma — Honestly, there are a few scenarios every movie fan never expects to see in their lifetime like Michael Bay Romantic Comedy or George Lucas turns down profits and I believe I experienced one such incident during my last Drive-In Theater visit. If someone had managed to use the words not too bad and horror flick in the same sentence beforehand, I would have recommended a good psychiatrist, but this time the line in the sand is a bit blurred.

Not only am I not wearing a straight jacket (typing with one’s teeth is an art I haven’t acquired), I am still coping with the result of the film in question and dare I say is on the edge of fricking sweet. Now, I’m far from accepting the genre blindly with open arms, yet I have to give high marks to the minds behind this project. If Josh Whedon can win me over with something I don’t like generally with “The Cabin in the Woods,” my mind might just melt in the opening scene of his super hero gathering May 4.

As a foreword to others who share my pain with the usual offerings in this realm, it may feel like this plot starts out annoyingly familiar, but it turns out to buck just about every expected finale. For example, I can already hear the screechy knife music when main college kid characters Dana (Kristen Connolly), Curt (Chris Hemsworth), Jules (Anna Hutchison), Marty (Fran Kranz), and Holden (Jesse Williams) decide to go on summer vacation to a cabin so isolated no one would know if they died or not.

As it turns out, things are going to indeed get predictably worse, but only because said cabin is actually part of a worldwide conspiracy where all peril is introduced via technology by technicians Richard Sitterson (Richard Jenkins) and Steve Hadley (Bradley Whitford). What follows is pretty much a reference to all kinds of deadly movies we’ve seen before, only those who survive aren’t content in letting their end be something to be so easily manipulated. The ultimate twist is actually amusing and fitting as it both acts as social commentary and might not be far off if one found the situation reality.

In other words, as corny as things become, it is actually worth sitting all the way through and obviously has appeal to more than just those who have become slasher numb. However, don’t take it as being safe for young eyes because there is still plenty content (violent and otherwise) really only meant for adult audiences.

To add to my quickly disappearing disbelief, I could also see myself watching it again, either as a rental or discount purchase. This may be one Scooby short of a mystery solving gang, but there’s no secret as to why it has become as popular as it has. Final Verdict for “The Cabin in the Woods:” Three and a half out of five screams.

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