Godziwolf
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Joined: December 7th, 2008, 5:04 pm

November 21st, 2017, 5:05 pm #61

I like both parts of the film, but they don't entirely play well together.

There are two similar films in the last decade -- Tucker and Dale vs Evil, and Rare Exports, both from 2010. Both, I think, are better films that make similar observations. Tucker and Dale riffs on the cabin portion, and Rare Exports riffs on the concept of placating a mostly forgotten ancient god in a dark comedy setting.

That said, I think the Cabin portion works better than many reviewers here think it does. They are cliches. They are supposed to be. But the characters subvert their own clicheness. The athlete is on an academic scholarship. The scholar is a scholarship athlete. The fool is the only one who knows what's going on. The virgin isn't. Really only the slut resembles her role, but even that required extensive manipulation from the Basement. As does the dumb things the characters do. They have to be drugged into compliance, and still fight the manipulation. They nearly beat the cave-in, and the Basement has to cheat on containment. You hate seeing these guys die, because they don't deserve their fates.

I get what Whedon and Goddard are doing, and I love the various cameos. I just wish their two concepts merged more seamlessly. I like the horror, and I like the comedy, but they never quite get both working at the same time. There's nothing like the scene of Ash fighting his hand.

I think the Merman was a reference to Monster Squad's Creature from the Black Lagoon. I liked the blowhole shot, too. That paid off an earlier setup.

The main plot hole is the call from upstairs. What upstairs? The sole person we see who could have been Upstairs was actually downstairs...
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Joined: September 15th, 2010, 12:25 am

November 23rd, 2017, 10:52 pm #62

Andrew Kidd wrote: I found it tremendously overrated; it's another movie that pretends it's saying something original and thoughtful without realizing that it's just trampling through tired old ground. I liked the Terry Gilliam-like set pieces featured at the climax, but long before then, I was irritated and bored by the dumb, one-dimensional characters (trying to defend them by saying that they're supposed to be one-dimensional because they're just stand-ins for the viewer and producers of mass entertainment doesn't wash, because even an allegory can't depend on an idiot plot), and found myself predicting every "surprise" plot twist and "point" the film makers wanted to make. It's like something the stoner character would have cooked up after watching EVIL DEAD, THE WICKER MAN, HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL, TIME BANDITS and THE TRUMAN SHOW all at once on one of those multi-screen TVs that the filmmakers always cut to.
I'm with you dude. I have to admit that "self aware" horror films.are getting kind of tired for me. 

Can anyone explain to me why this is a horror film?
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hermanthegerm
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Joined: December 1st, 2005, 8:05 am

September 9th, 2018, 8:47 pm #63

Cabin in the Woods (2012)

For my second viewing, I found myself in virtually the same mental state as the last time: Cabin in the Woods seems to be an apology for bad, derivative Horror films. 
That would be my main gripe. 
Why not instead a focus on original, idiosyncratic films instead? 

I mentioned Scream before, now I'm gonna mention Wes Craven's New Nightmare as a previous example of a movie which does a better job deconstructing a series of Horror films. It's actually fairly close in concept, if not in direction.

Other than that, knowing beforehand where the plot is going it seems to flow a lot smoother and the precious clash in transitions becomes not nearly as worrisome.

This time, I appreciated that the characters are actually smart, and the need to be artificially dumbed down for the purpose of the story.
But also, the last segment loses something in its familiarity. It's much more delightful when it catches one unaware.

At least it still works, even when no longer in surprise mode.
"There is a lot of money tied up in this film and people expect to hear a boom when something blows up, so I'll give them a boom."

George Lucas as quoted by Harlan Ellison's WATCHING
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Godziwolf
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Joined: December 7th, 2008, 5:04 pm

September 10th, 2018, 12:48 pm #64

hermanthegerm wrote: Cabin in the Woods (2012)

For my second viewing, I found myself in virtually the same mental state as the last time: Cabin in the Woods seems to be an apology for bad, derivative Horror films. 
That would be my main gripe. 
Why not instead a focus on original, idiosyncratic films instead?
It's harder to make fun of classic works, and there are a lot fewer of them.

Also, it's harder to make what's really an extended joke about the existence of movies like Friday the 13th if the movie you're referencing doesn't make your cut.

You can only make so many Psycho jokes.
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hermanthegerm
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Joined: December 1st, 2005, 8:05 am

September 10th, 2018, 1:13 pm #65

Godziwolf wrote:
hermanthegerm wrote: Cabin in the Woods (2012)

For my second viewing, I found myself in virtually the same mental state as the last time: Cabin in the Woods seems to be an apology for bad, derivative Horror films. 
That would be my main gripe. 
Why not instead a focus on original, idiosyncratic films instead?
It's harder to make fun of classic works, and there are a lot fewer of them.

Also, it's harder to make what's really an extended joke about the existence of movies like Friday the 13th if the movie you're referencing doesn't make your cut.

You can only make so many Psycho jokes.
I understand that. 
It's not that it's deriding formula, but that underneath it all the movie is saying that there is a need for formula. 
"There is a lot of money tied up in this film and people expect to hear a boom when something blows up, so I'll give them a boom."

George Lucas as quoted by Harlan Ellison's WATCHING
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Dr Acula
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Joined: January 28th, 2007, 2:16 am

September 10th, 2018, 4:16 pm #66

Is anybody here familiar with the horror-oriented board game Betrayal at the House On The Hill? The thing is, I wonder if this influenced the writing of Cabin in the Woods, because the plot of the game works like the Cabin. Specifically, when you are playing the game, your characters wander in a haunted house until somebody triggers one of the random haunted, which is determined by who opens what in the haunted house, who is by them, and sometimes based on what objects have been uncovered. I could see somebody playing the game and thinking "hey, there is a story here worthy of a horror film" and going to town.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betrayal_ ... n_the_Hill
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hermanthegerm
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Joined: December 1st, 2005, 8:05 am

September 10th, 2018, 4:37 pm #67

Dr Acula wrote: Is anybody here familiar with the horror-oriented board game Betrayal at the House On The Hill? The thing is, I wonder if this influenced the writing of Cabin in the Woods, because the plot of the game works like the Cabin. Specifically, when you are playing the game, your characters wander in a haunted house until somebody triggers one of the random haunted, which is determined by who opens what in the haunted house, who is by them, and sometimes based on what objects have been uncovered. I could see somebody playing the game and thinking "hey, there is a story here worthy of a horror film" and going to town.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betrayal_ ... n_the_Hill
I own the game.  There are also custom Scooby Doo connections to the board game. It might be serendipity.

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I also own a SIMS / TYCOON styled CD-ROM game where the purpose is to manage ghosts and haunt and scare the bejezus out of figures that walk around your mansion. 
The more you manage to scare them the higher your score.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ghost_Master
"There is a lot of money tied up in this film and people expect to hear a boom when something blows up, so I'll give them a boom."

George Lucas as quoted by Harlan Ellison's WATCHING
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