Tuesday, April 17, 2012

"Cabin" Clever Not Cliche

If you're a fan of horror films, you should go see this film. If, like me, you're not a fan of horror films, you should go see this film.

Quite simply it's one of the most creative films in its genre in decades, a meta reference of films like it in the style of the Scream franchise and incredibly entertaining to watch because you can't anticipate what happens next, although you'll have fun trying. You may think you know this horror movie, but you have no idea.

This acutely self-aware parody focuses on a group of twenty-somethings spending what's supposed to be a relaxing weekend get-away at...a cabin in the woods. Already, you think you have this film pigeon-holed into the film it's predecessors have stereotyped for you, but let me assure you the writers were well aware of these stereotypes. You have the football-tossing jock (Chris Hemsworth) with too much testosterone; his beautiful, but slutty girlfriend (Anna Hutchison); her innocent, wide-eyed, wet-blanket roommate (Kristen Connolly); the jock's male friend (Jesse Williams)--because who's gonna throw him the football?--and last but certainly not least the stoner (Fran Kranz) who is somehow cool enough to hang out with this group. I'll leave this synopsis as vague as the previews, because divulging anymore would be a great injustice to the genius, yes--Genius! story this film has meticulously crafted for our entertainment pleasure.

Cabin will make you laugh probably more often than jump, but in no way sacrifices gore for giggles. There's plenty of blood, guts and other icky bodily fluids both spewing and entering the body's orifices.

Like I mentioned, I'm not a horror fan. I loved Rosemary's Baby, but that's partly due to the amazing Roman Polanski. I always said, when it comes to this genre, I've already seen it all; everything now-a-days is a rehash of old ideas. However, I'm not so proud to refrain from uttering the real horror: I was wrong. I never could have anticipated nor predicted what I was in for when I went to go see it and perhaps my low expectations helped elevate my overall impression of Cabin, but regardless of any preconceived notions, this is a really great film.

Director/writer Drew Goddard (Cloverfield), like the blood spilled in the film, keeps the story flowing smoothly. He wastes no time in introducing the story and characters and keeps us completely invested in the narrative, no matter how far it stretches, because it's just so damn fun. That's thanks to co-writer Joss Whedon (Buffy series) who maintains a fast-paced tone, with adrenaline-induced horror scenes and laugh-out-loud witty humor.

I appologize for the complete lack of disclosure, but trust me it'll be worth it. I never thought I'd be saying this, considering I had no intentions of seeing it*, but Cabin in the Woods (so far) is one of the best films of 2012.

Rating: B

*thanks Dan

Monday, April 2, 2012

March Mash Up

I decided to try something new. I don't have time to review every movie I see, so I thought I'd give a quick rating and one to two sentence thoughts on movies I had seen during the month of March.....
                                                                We Need To Talk About Kevin
                                                                  One of my top five favorite films of last year.
                                                                                        Rating: A

                                                                            The Skin I Live In
 Had I gone into this film not knowing anything about it, I would have said, "This has to be an Almodovar film!" And alas he lives up to his reputation.
                                                                                         Rating: A

                                                               Martha Marcy May Marlene
         As Seth Rogen said it best about this Olsen sister: "Where were they hiding her? She's the best one!"
                                                                                         Rating: A-

                                                                   The Ides of March
 This is why I love movies, they can make me care about politics. Nothing original, but very pleasantly surprised.
                                                                                        Rating: A-

                                                                                  Bonnie and Clyde
 Before Jay-Z and Beyonce there was the stunning Faye Dunaway and gorgeous Warren Beautty living the unglamorous gangster life.
                                                                                            Rating: A-

                                                                       My Week With Marilyn
                                                              Don't care for Ms. Monroe, but did like the film.
                                                                                     Rating: B+

                                                                             21 Jump Street
                                                                       Channing Tatum, funny? Yes.
                                                                                   Rating: B+

                                                                               School Daze
                                                   A both funny and serious film. I dare you not to be inspired!
                                                                                    Rating: B+   

                                                       Take Shelter 
              Not quite as good as I was expecting, but a great performance by Shannon kept me satiated.
                                                                                         Rating: B+  

                                                                              True Romance
  As close to a romance Tarantino will ever write. But seriously, my thought during the whole film: "Holy shit! Was that Gary Oldman?"
                                                                                     Rating: B+

                                                  Formula One isn't my thing, but a very nicely done documentary.
                                                                                          Rating: B

                                                      Young Adult
 Not quite sure what I was expecting, but found it a little lackluster. Thankfully, the end made up for most of it. Love films that explore psychological issues.
                                                                                     Rating: B

                                                                            The Hunger Games
                                 Overall a faithful film adaptation of the book and can't wait for the next installation in the series.
                                                                                       Rating: B-  

             No, I have never seen Scream before! Now that I have, did you guys know this movie's kinda ingenious?           
                                                                                               Rating: B-

                                                                                      The play is better.
                                                                                             Rating: C+