14/04/2012

The Cabin in the Woods

Despite sitting on the shelf for 3 years, The Cabin in the Woods has come out of nowhere with nothing more than rave reviews behind it to become one of the most anticipated films of the year. Even more interesting than that is the way people are being warned off reading, watching or hearing anything about it in an attempt to go in fresh and watch it unfold without any prior knowledge, and judging by a few spoilerific reviews that's a very good idea. But I wonder; shouldn't all films be treated the same despite their structure or genre? Isn't it always better to see everything for the first time, in context, instead of months of official images, preview footage and endless trailers that cut all the best bits together at a breathless pace?

It wouldn't be a spoiler for me to say that there's no great Shyamalan-like twist at the end of Cabin that'll question everything you've seen prior to its reveal. Nope; it's just a good, old-fashioned film that continues to unravel in the most brilliantly bonkers and entertaining way imaginable just as you think you know exactly what's coming. If anything, the so-called twist occurs before the title card splashes across the screen amid a flurry of blood splatters and co-writers Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard (also director) are very respectful of the audience's intelligence by asking them why they even watch horror films while deconstructing the genre as it follows its rules. It's also awesome.

If I'm honest I'd have to say that the first two acts aren't funny or scary enough but the last 20 minutes had me hawking back to the glorious days of the late-90s when a certain vampire slayer was my idol and Whedon was an absolute God. It's everything that was great about those shows and more because you don't even have to be a fan or have 'Buffy + Angel 4EVA' on your old school diary to appreciate it. Just don't be surprised when The Wayans brothers announce their crappy spoof version in a few months.