Tag Archives: The Cabin in the Woods

Guest Review: The Cabin in the Woods

Director: Drew Goddard
Year: 2012
Score: 7.5/10
Reviewer: Drew Pontikis

"Wow, my hair looks a lot more ginger than I thought it did. Probably due a cut as well."

“Wow, my hair looks a lot more ginger than I thought it did. Probably due a cut as well.”

This is a very intriguing film because the horror is underlying rather than in your face, and so you find yourself almost overlooking the action that’s going on in front of you. As it happens, that’s a testament to how well the film is shot.

As a group of five friends head out to a cabin in the woods (duh), they are watched by what appears to be a team of government officials in some large complex. Once there, they find themselves set upon by zombies and, in a bid to escape, stumble across the real story that they are playing out.

The Cabin in the Woods has a very clever premise and, as mentioned above, is extremely well executed. What may have been a ten-a-penny zombie horror film is wrapped around something much darker, showing the indifference of man towards suffering when it is perceived as necessary. It’s poignant as it’s actually believable; it doesn’t feel like were the governments of the world given a similar situation this would be too far from what might happen (of course I realise this is nonsense but you know what I mean).

At no point does The Cabin in the Woods feel like a horror film, as the horror is incidental to the story. It’s absorbing and it keeps hold of you as it turns from zombie slasher to over the top government conspiracy almost seamlessly, and offers an alternative to a genre that too often becomes lazy and repetitive.

The only comment I have on it though is the clips of Japan; having finished watching it and spent some time thinking about how the plot works, not only does it not make any sense it is completely at odds with the whole premise of the plot. Why roughly 14 seconds of film incidental to the story bothered me isn’t clear, but it did. Just thought I’d mention it.

Drew Pontikis is an avid gamer and film fanatic. A fan of racing sims, first person shooters and horror films, Drew is notable for talking almost exclusively using Futurama quotes. Follow him on Twitter as @drew060609 or read his game reviews at http://obscenegaming.wordpress.com.

Advertisements

Review: Resolution

Directors: Justin Benson & Aaron Scott Moorhead
Year: 2012
Score: 6.5/10

These three UFO cultists are played by writer/co-director Justin Benson, co-director Aaron Moorhead, and producer David Clarke Johnson, Jr. Based on the content of the film, it wouldn't surprise me in the least to find out that all three are genuinely members of a UFO cult.

These three UFO cultists are played by writer/co-director Justin Benson, co-director Aaron Moorhead, and producer David Clarke Johnson, Jr. Based on the content of the film, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least to find out that all three are genuinely members of a UFO cult.

Intriguing but ultimately unsatisfying low budget horror movie with a central premise I’m loathe to discuss for fear of spoiling it. Suffice it to say this isn’t the kind of horror movie that aims to freak you out with shocking imagery, or by laying the tension-signifying music on thick, or by over-using violence or gore. Instead it puts two well-drawn characters into a relatively realistic situation, then gradually throws ‘unexplained phenomena’ at them with explanations that all consist of well-worn horror tropes, and then takes a left turn to subvert and comment on those tropes. Its meta nature has inevitably led to comparisons with The Cabin in the Woods; I prefer this one, but they really are vastly different in what they’re trying to do and why they turn meta. It’s reasonably well-made and the two leads – unknowns Peter Cilella and Vinny Curran – do well with the material. I wasn’t a huge fan of the ending even though I realise it was consistent with the premise.