By Kien Ha
“The Cabin in the Woods,” makes unexpected twists and offers a new perspective into the horror movie clichés.
The film, which was directed by Joss Whedon, begins with two technicians (Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford) having a conversation at what appears to be an ordinary work facility. They discuss an unexplained operation that is underway, and head to make preparation.
Meanwhile, packing for a road trip, the five young adults introduce the personalities that are usually seen in American horror flicks with athletic Curt (Chris Hemsworth), promiscuous Jules (Anna Hutchison), scholarly Holden (Jesse Williams), goofy Marty (Fran Kranz), and introverted Dana (Kristen Connolly).
The group heads out as the technicians track their every move. Eventually, they arrive at a vacation home that belongs to a cousin of Curt, located within the woods in the middle of nowhere.
During a game of truth or dare later that night, a cellar door suddenly bursts open and Dana is dared to go investigate. She discovers a massive collection of strange antique items, and her friends soon join her. As each character begins to fiddle with a particular discovery, the technicians observe from behind the camera and place bids on which scenario the students will trigger to ultimately decide their fate.
Dana finds an old diary and reads aloud a Latin incantation, awakening a group of zombies in the nearby woods, starting a grizzly and gory finalé.
The acting within the film is a solid five out of five. The cast successfully mixes suspense with a touch of comedy and parody, despite the majority of the characters being difficult to like.
Expect the classic elements that make an American horror movie, such as endless gore, the venture-alone-into-the-dark moments, stupid decisions and jumpy scenes. However, viewers will be glad to find that these elements do not make the movie. Additionally, in placement of a vague storyline that often accompanies these clichés, is a smart and unexpected twist that attempts to explain the formula of horror flicks since the past decades.
Fans of the horror genre looking for something out of the ordinary among the many cheesy remakes and sequels can expect the best from the breath of fresh air that is “The Cabin in the Woods.”
The movie runs for one hour and 35 minutes and is rated R for foul language, violent scenes and brief nudity.