I literally just got home from seeing Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard's The Cabin in the Woods, and thought that writing a full review would be far too spoilery (even though the premise is pretty obvious from the get-go), so I decided to borrow from my buddy Sean again and do a quick 5 For & 5 Against review.
Let's start with 5 For:
1. Whedon and Goddard's often hilarious script takes a standard horror trope and turns it on it's ear in a crazy, Lovecraftian story that is aptly represented by the movie's Rubik's Cube poster.
2. Here there be some very fun monsters!
3. Goddard has assembled a cracker jack cast that includes the always wonderful Richard Jenkins; Bradley Whitford; Chris Hemsworth; Fran Kranz and a super-secret cameo that should have JA wetting himself.
4. References to at least a dozen horror movies including Hellraiser; Night of the Living Dead; and An American Werewolf... to name a few.
5. Some truly terrific CGI effects.
|Fran Kranz and His Giant Coffee Mug Bong|
And now the 5 Against:
1. Hemsworth doesn't spend nearly enough time out his clothes.
2. I didn't buy Kranz as a stoner but that may be because I know him better as the nerdy genius from Whedon's ill-fated (but excellent) series "Dollhouse."
3. The machinations that drive the plot are actually quite ridiculous and the plot holes are plenty. Too many things conveniently happen, especially near the end.
4. Who is spending all that money for these secret facilities around the world?
5. Final Girl Dana (Kristen Connolly) actually just annoyed me.
Overall, the movie is fun and original, but it's too self-aware and ultimately silly to be an effective horror movie. **1/2 (Two and a Half Stars Out of Four).