Billed as a ‘game-changer’, a seismic moment in the horror genre and pretty much every other over-the-top piece of hyperbole you can muster, The Cabin In The Woods was always going to have a struggle on its hands to truly impress. 

But, if a piece of in-your-face, outrageous entertainment is what you are looking for then you have come to the right place, as this slice of Joss Whedon-Drew Goddard cinematic goodness delivers in spades. 

It’s not all great, and the script sags in places, but in terms of putting a smile on the face of hardened movie watchers this is right up there. 

The story has been shrouded in secrecy right from the off, understandably so when you get sucked in to the various twists and turns that have been unleashed on screen. 

This is one of those rare occasions where the less you know on sitting down to watch events unfold the better, as a lot of the fun on offer here is from seeing just what crazy ideas they come up with next. 

In a nutshell Cabin tells the tale of five friends, who head to a remote shack to enjoy a weekend of booze, sex and truth or dare. 

So far so teen horror, with the cast a bunch that are pretty easy on the eye, headed up by Aussie beefcake Chris Hemsworth. 

But after an introductory segment that could easily have been outtakes from the latest entry in the ‘Wrong Turn’ series, complete with a warning from a redneck gas station attendant, things really get rocking. 

Suddenly the film takes on a much grander scope than first imagined and the great thing is you have no real clue as to who will live and who will die. 

Despite there being some pretty high-octane and crowd-pleasing jolts of horror here, there are also lashings of humour, some of it jet-black. 

The effects in the main are excellent, although some CGI late on is distinctly second rate, more akin to the likes of Komodo vs Cobra. 

Some of the film’s ideas are also incredibly derivative, so derivative in fact that it quite simply has to be (and indeed is) deliberate. 

But that really works in fact, as there will be numerous times during the pacy running time where horror geeks will be nodding knowingly, only for the rug to be pulled out from under their feet – in a story sense of course. 

That is the real delight of Cabin In The Woods – it is not a game-changer, nor a film that you will be raving about months down the line, but in terms of a sheer good time at the cinema, it is pretty hard to beat.

 

 

About The Author

Simon Fitzjohn

Simon is a journalism tutor in London, who also just happens to be a movie fanatic, with a craving for the darker side of cinema. He has written two books, one on the horror films of director Bob Clark (2014) and the other on the history of the character Norman Bates (2015). His third book, on the work of British exploitation director Pete Walker, is due in 2017.