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The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
Accept our sacrifice, their blood shall giveth voice.
Having not been much of a fan of Joss Whedon's other work, I didn't see this movie in theaters. I did see the Avengers in theaters, and thought it was okay, nothing really that special, which I know is not a popular opinion. However, I've heard great things about this movie, and when it came to Netflix, I had to give it a shot.
That was an hour and a half I'll never forget.
This movie is NOT for stupid people; I'll preface this entire review by saying that. I'm sure that there are plenty of people who saw this in theaters and completely missed the fact that the majority of it is satirizing the average horror movie. The characters make smart decisions initially, though are led by the forces controlling it all to make cliché, idiotic decisions and assume the roles of cliché B horror movie characters. Despite being endlessly interesting, I laughed my ass off at so many scenes in this movie.
That, truly, is what makes it special. I can't remember a movie that blends satire with an overtone of "WHAT THE #$%^ IS GOING ON?!" more than this one. It's not the South Park brand of satire (and I love South Park) - with The Cabin in the Woods, the satire is there, but it's woven in with an overall very interesting story that keeps you guessing the entire time. It took me quite awhile to figure out what the "corporation" aspect of the movie was, though I did get most of it before the "big reveal".
When the Japanese section was being shown for the first time, I thought to myself, "Is that the girl from the Ring?" It is. That is a PERFECT example of the subtle brilliance that this movie throws at you that will be lost on most people. Let me explain. The Ring was originally a Japanese horror film that is considered to probably be the best Japanese horror movie ever, and was remade into the English version that we all know a few years after. On top of that, there are many other characters from other horror movies thrown into the giant chaotic slaughter at the end. It, The Strangers, and many more that I haven't seen are given just enough screen time to let us know who they are. Why is that so brilliant? It gives us a reason, although fictional, for the stupid, ridiculous decisions of the characters in EVERY OTHER horror movie, and those last few minutes are truly the ultimate satire of it all, in addition to the very interesting and dramatic climax of this completely new story.
Also, the final decision the characters make is from a very apathetic viewpoint of humanity; yet another thing that I can appreciate so much. Humanity really has served it's time on this earth. Let's let someone else have a try.