Do you ever watch a horror movie and think that you know the story? Do you believe there is nothing left to be surprised by in a genre filled with tropes and clichés? Drew Goddard’s The Cabin in the Woods might just be the film for you.
The Cabin in the Woods tells a familiar tale. Five college students, filling those archetypes we have come to know and love, set off to relax in a remote cabin in the woods. We meet our lovable promiscuous blonde, the innocent young woman looking to forget an old love, the jock (played by the very appropriate Chris Hemsworth), the scholar, and the very funny lovable stoner.
The stage is set as they head up to a creepy cabin, stopping for gas to talk with a tellingly creepy old man who warns them away from their destination. They discover a creepy basement filled with weird antiques and creepy relics. It’s the kind of scene that has you shouting at the characters to just run and never look A lot of the fun of The Cabin in the Woods comes from the way that it subverts expectations. You think you know what’s coming. It gives you exactly the things you were predicting right up until the moment it changes the game. In the interest of preserving that experience, I’m not going to tell you anything more about the story.
Cowritten by Joss Whedon, the script is smart and funny. It’s filled with the sort of humor that Buffy fans will find reassuringly familiar. Whedonverse alums Fran Kranz (Dollhouse) and Amy Acker (Angel and Dollhouse) are utilized wonderfully. Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford provide a great amount of comic relief in their roles. There is even a cameo by a certain classic scifi/horror heroine actress.
We’ve saved the best for last in capping out Fangirlnation’s 31 Days of Horror. Watch The Cabin in the Woods while you’re carving your pumpkins, getting your Halloween costume ready, or binging on candy at the end of the night. It’s a great way to end the spookiest month of the year.