Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The wind must have blown it open.

Lewis Black has a great bit about anticipation being the best part of life. His point, is that the moment just prior to whatever you've been waiting for is actually the pinnacle of the entire experience. The rest is just a letdown. This is an absolute truth when it comes to watching horror movies. Seeing whatever it is that is tormenting everyone, can't match the level of intensity in the seconds prior to the big reveal. The best thing about not knowing for sure, is there still the possibility that this could really happen. Things are still realistic.

The Cabin in the Woods fails on the realistic angle almost immediately, which removes damn near all the scares, unfortunately. But, it succeeds on just about every other level. While I enjoyed the characters, the acting, the violence and all the little things, what has stayed with me days later is the concept. Just when I feel that every self-referential and/or ironic angle has been played out, somebody comes along and rejuvenates the genre. Writer Joss Whedon and director Drew Goddard are two such somebodies.

For anyone who hasn't seen the flick yet, you might as well bail here. Oh, and people who like well-written and thoughtful posts, you kids should probably head out, too. I'll hold the door for you.

Sadly, I knew about the observation/lab angle going in. I tried to avoid any prior knowledge, but I inadvertently caught half a preview somewhere. But even knowing that much, still didn't prepare me for the awesomeness. And I'm not really talking about the ultimate ending (honestly, that kind of lost me, despite being cool visually), I'm really focusing on the contents of the program. Rooms and rooms of the worst things imaginable is so f--king badass it makes me want to squeal. Imagine if they could had licensed some of the horror legends, thereby making every horror flick ever true? I would have shit pure delight for at least a week. Maybe two.

With that horrible image resting comfortably in your mind, let's head down to the basement and do something foolish to unearth the Yays and Boos. Don't worry, if they saw you in the shower, killing you is the last thing they'd think of...

They're going to get Triscuit crackers out of Carl's car.
  • Gambling at work is always fun. But on who and how? Now that's an office pool I want to dive into.
  • At first all the horror cliches were frustrating. But they quickly became very cool.
  • Speaking of...I laughed out loud at Creepy Gas Station Guy's phone call to headquarters. Am I on speakerphone?
  • Maybe this is a Boo, but I learned that a hot chick kissing a dead wolf's head does something for me. Just me, apparently.
  • It's like the difference between elephant and elephant seal.
  • Two words: Richard. Motherf--king. Jenkins.
  • The Japanese version of the program! That's great.
  • Best motorcycle jump ever? Has to be on the list.
  • And finally, THE SCENE. You know what I'm talking about. Let's get this party started. Indeed.
  • Okay, huge nerd alert, but they reference a PSA they've never seen before. I used to milk that one for a laugh (that never came) once a week. I learned it by watching you!
  • The one-way mirror scene! Classy, but c'mon man! You could've waited ten more seconds. Please.
  • And speaking of, where were the boobs? No, no. I mean the big ones.
  • What actual people would ever, ever go away for a weekend and bring an odd number of people? Yes. That was what I found unbelievable. And yes, I'm an idiot.
  • And finally, who the Hell is afraid of a unicorn? I mean, other than me (now that I've seen what they're capable of).
The next movie I'm going to watch is yet another horror flick, you know, to keep the streak alive. It's about people trapped in a grocery store. With a shark.

Let's see if Lewis Black is right. I'm pretty certain he is.


  1. Good review M. It's one of the smarter horror movies I've seen in awhile, and it's definitely a hell of a lot more original than anything else I've seen in quite some time from that genre either. I didn't love it like so many others did, but I still had a great time wondering just where the hell this story was going to go and how.

    1. While I really loved the angle and the creativity, I'm actually with you in the idea that I honestly thought it was going to be better.

      I really liked it, but for whatever reason, I thought I was going to go apeshit due to pure happiness.

      Crisis averted.

  2. Loved the movie, so much fun - I agree it wasn't scary but it was really clever and entertaining. Richard Jenkins is always terrific and I love those japanese girls singing away the scary ghost :) I laughed out loud during motorcycle jump, it was such a fantastic parody of cliche :)

    1. Completely agree. Cliches were being destroyed left and right in this one.

  3. I love how they advertised this as a standard horror movie. I went into pretty unaware of what I was getting myself into. Next thing I know it's a critique on what us as audience want in terms of ridiculousness of horror movies with a legitimately awesome twist and climax.

    1. If I could have gone in blind, I'm sure I would have flat out loved this movie. Today, I was talking to a co-worker about it and he said, "You liked it? It looks like the most generic horror movie ever."

      If only I was that guy!

  4. I loved this movie, especially since I managed to avoid any spoilers beforehand. And I thoroughly enjoyed your post -- funny, clever, and dead on. :-)

    1. Thanks, SW. It's very rare that I don't stumble into some kind of spoiler. Well done!

  5. Hot chick kissing dead wolf's head is definitely a yay. Didn't find this scary but actually funnier than most comedies. "Err... that makes what sense?" always crack me up and yeah, creepy gas station guy's phone conversation was hilarious!

  6. I saw the movie last night for Halloween. I thought there were some good moments in the movie, but the film as a whole felt like a rejected Buffy episode.

    I know that the movie was supposed to poke fun at horror movie archetypes. I wish that it was executed for effectively.

    1. Now, I never watched Buffy, but good Lord! If this was a rejected script, that show must have been mind blowing!

      That said, I didn't love it either, but I'm still impressed by the concept. And the chaos in the facility made it all worth it in my book.