I saw The Cabin in the Woods twice this week, it was so good. The film gleefully eviscerates the conventions behind teen horror movies and adds its own layers of horror, sliced and diced with everyday life, as only Joss Whedon could.
Take five cliches of the genre – whore, jock, thinker, fool, and virgin – except that they don’t quite fit the stereotypes. As you would expect from the creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, even when he’s satirizing the genre, he still writes multifaceted characters.
They’re all college students. The whore is pre-med, not dumb at all, and only recently blonde; the jock is on a full academic scholarship; the thinker has an eye for the virgin; and the virgin isn’t a virgin, having recently been dumped by her professor via text message. The fool is most interesting of all, a dead ringer for the hippy in Scooby-Doo, but the only one who sees through the illusion. He also has the funniest lines and the best entrance, showing up at the rendezvous point with a two foot high bong that telescopes into an aluminium coffee mug. You’ve got to admire that Yankee ingenuity.
The film is chock full of self-referential moments, including the casting of an actor from Angel in an almost identical role. Mega body count, laugh out loud moments, an ending you’ll never guess, plus a cameo appearance by Sigourney Weaver. Irresistible. If you’re wondering where all the extra bodies come from, I’m not telling. You should see the film.