Cabin in the Woods

Cabin in the Woods

5.0 1
Director: Drew Goddard

Cast: Drew Goddard, Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison

     
 

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Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard team up for this bloody horror satire that offers an inventive twist on the familiar stranded-in-the-woods sub-genre. As five friends pile into an RV bound for a secluded cabin far from civilization, the operators of a mysterious, high-tech control room monitor their every move while preparing an arcane ritual that dates back to the… See more details below

Overview

Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard team up for this bloody horror satire that offers an inventive twist on the familiar stranded-in-the-woods sub-genre. As five friends pile into an RV bound for a secluded cabin far from civilization, the operators of a mysterious, high-tech control room monitor their every move while preparing an arcane ritual that dates back to the beginning of time. Shortly after arriving at the rickety cottage, Dana (Kristen Connolly) and her friends Curt (Chris Hemsworth), Jules (Anna Hutchison), Marty (Fran Kranz), and Holden (Jesse Willaims) venture into the basement and discover a little girl's diary from the early 1900s -- which recounts a series of horrifying events that unfolded precisely where the vacationing teens how stand. Before long, the nightmare comes knocking at the door -- murder gleaming from its putrid eyes and a rusty saw clenched in rotting hands. In the control room, everything is going exactly according to plan; Sitterson (Richard Jenkins) and Hadley (Bradley Whitford) are taking bets, and their supervisor Lin (Amy Acker) is monitoring every detail. But just when it looks like the show is over, an unexpected glitch threatens to topple the entire system.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
The Cabin in the Woods is a fiendishly clever, constantly imaginative horror thriller that keeps springing new surprises on the audience right up until the end credits, but it also presents a large problem for any reviewer: how do you discuss a film that's built around a series of plot twists and reveals that radically reshape the movie you think you're watching, and that start with the very first scene? Make no mistake: you're better off going into The Cabin in the Woods knowing absolutely nothing, or even better, just thinking that it's another brain-dead horror flick during which you'll be yelling at the screen about how stupid the characters are. Here's what we can safely reveal: The Cabin in the Woods does indeed center on five friends from college, each of whom appears, on the surface at least, to resemble one of the classic slasher-film archetypes. There's Curt (Chris Hemsworth), an athlete whose cousin has lent him a secluded cabin for a weekend getaway; Jules (Anna Hutchison), Curt's horny girlfriend who has just dyed her hair blonde; Dana (Kristen Connolly), a bookworm whom Curt admonishes for neglecting her social life in favor of her studies; Holden (Jesse Williams), the nice guy brought along as a romantic interest for Dana; and Marty (Fran Kranz), the requisite stoner and comic relief who is constantly paranoid that something bad is about to happen to all of them. The five pals arrive at the cabin and immediately begin to feel an ominous vibe, and when they explore the place's spooky, dimly basement, they find a number of strange artifacts. Seems pretty straightforward, but wait -- what's going on in the first scene of the movie, which seems to be set in some sort of corporate office? And why are two office drones (played by Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford) talking about how sites around the rest of the world have failed and it's up to them to succeed or else face dire consequences? Giving away anything more would be unfair, but suffice it to say, The Cabin in the Woods seems at first glance to be setting up a run-of-the-mill Texas Chainsaw Massacre knockoff, only to reveal itself as a thorough deconstruction of horror movies that skewers the most ridiculous clichés of the genre, as well as some of its misogynistic undertones. It feels at times like co-writers Joss Whedon (a geek legend and wildly prolific artist best known for creating the TV shows Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly) and Drew Goddard (a former writer for Buffy and Lost) drew up a checklist of every scene and character typically found in slasher films and proceeded to ask themselves, "How can we put a new spin on this?" Or maybe more accurately, "How can we make fun of this while still using it to scare people?" The cast are all quite good, although special praise goes to Kranz for keeping his character from becoming annoying (never an easy task when you're playing the goofy stoner), as well as the pairing of Jenkins and Whitford for selling the humorous and mundane nature of their bizarre job. Co-scribe Goddard also directed the film, and while the picture isn't quite as atmospheric as, say, the Evil Dead movies (clearly a touchstone for The Cabin in the Woods), we should be grateful that a screenplay this smart wasn't ruined by a hack filmmaker overly reliant on jump cuts and shaky camerawork to sell the scares; Goddard knows how to put together scenes so that you can always tell who is where and what's going on (a pretty low bar that most of the directors put in charge of big-name horror franchises can't seem to clear), and while you can feel him straining against a relatively modest budget during the picture's absolutely insane climax, this is still one of the most promising directorial debuts in a long while. From its disorienting opening to its unexpected twist ending, The Cabin in the Woods is a wild joyride that should appeal to both horror aficionados and those who find the whole genre witless and unbelievable. Perhaps more importantly, it's the shot of adrenaline that horror movies badly need after an endless parade of lackluster remakes and cheaply made found-footage spectacles; now that Goddard and Whedon have vivisected the slasher genre and exposed its inner workings, let's hope that this inspires some young turk to stop relying on the same old tropes and come up with the next big thing in horror filmmaking.

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Product Details

Release Date:
09/18/2012
UPC:
0031398156185
Original Release:
2012
Rating:
R
Source:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
A
Sound:
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
1:35:00
Sales rank:
19,064

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Kristen Connolly Actor,Dana
Chris Hemsworth Actor,Curt
Anna Hutchison Actor,Jules
Fran Kranz Actor,Marty
Jesse Williams Actor,Holden
Richard Jenkins Actor,Sitterson
Bradley Whitford Actor,Hadley
Brian J. White Truman
Amy Acker Lin
Tim de Zarn Mordecai
Tom Lenk Ronald the Intern
Dan Payne Matthew Buckner
Jodelle Ferland Patience Buckner
Danny Shea Father Buckner
Maya Massar Mother Buckner
Matt Drake Judah Buckner
Nels Lennarson Clean Man
Rukiya Bernard Labcoat Girl
Adrian Holmes Demo Guy
Chelah Horsdal Demo Guy
Terry Chen Operations Guy
Heather Doerksen Accountant
Patrick Sabongui Elevator Guard
Phillip Mitchell Lead Guard
Naomi Dane Japanese Floaty Girl
Ellie Harvie Military Liaison
Patrick Gilmore Werewolf Wrangler
Brad Dryborough Chem Department Guy
Emili Kawashima Japanese Frog Girl
Aya Furukawa Japanese School Girl
Maria Go Japanese School Girl
Serena Akane Chi Japanese School Girl
Abbey Imai Japanese School Girl
Marina Ishibashi Japanese School Girl
Miku Katsuura Japanese School Girl
Alicia Takase Lui Japanese School Girl
Jodi Tabuchi Japanese School Girl
Sara Taira Japanese School Girl
Alyssandra Yamamoto Japanese School Girl
Richard Cetrone Werewolf/Merman
Phoebe Galvan Sugarplum Fairy
Simon Pidgeon Dismemberment Goblin
Matt Phillips Dismemberment Goblin
Lori Stewar Floating Witch
Gregory Zach Fornicus, Lord of Bondage and Pain

Technical Credits
Drew Goddard Director,Screenwriter
AFX Studio Makeup Special Effects
David Leroy Anderson Makeup Special Effects
Gitte Axen Makeup
Paul Becker Choreography
Heike Brandstatter Casting
Nancy Brown Set Decoration/Design
Jason Clark Executive Producer
Anya Colloff Casting
Richard Cowan Asst. Director
Dane A. Davis Sound/Sound Designer
Peter Deming Cinematographer
Michael Diner Art Director
Kendelle Elliott Art Director
Allan Galajda Set Decoration/Design
David Julyan Score Composer
Lisa Lassek Editor
Coreen Mayrs Casting
Amy McIntyre-Britt Casting
Rhythm & Hues Studios Animator
Dana Sano Musical Direction/Supervision
Domenic Silvestri Set Decoration/Design
Peter Stratford Set Decoration/Design
John Swallow Co-producer
Michael Toby Set Decoration/Design
Shawna Trpcic Costumes/Costume Designer
Viva Wang Set Decoration/Design
Joss Whedon Producer,Screenwriter
Martin Whist Production Designer
Joel Whist Special Effects Supervisor

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Scene Index

Closed Caption; Audio commentary with writer/director Drew Goddard and writer/producer Joss Whedon; We are not who we are: making The Cabin in the Woods; An army of nightmares: makeup & animatronic effects; Primal terror: visual effects; The secret secret stash: Marty's stash, hi, my name is Joss and I'll be your guide; Wondercon Q&A; It;s not what you think: The Cabin in the Woods BonusView mode

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