Of course one of the most anticipated horror films of this year would open on Friday the 13th. The Cabin in the Woods, penned and directed by Cloverfield and Buffy the Vampire Slayer screenwriter (TV show) Drew Goddard, opened last week with lots of hoopla behind it. It doesn't hurt the film's street cred that Buffy creator and cult favorite Joss Whedon helped write and produce the movie.
The celluloid has barely warmed up and already Internet critics are giving it big praise. The review site Rotten Tomatoes ranks it 92 percent on the "tomatometer." The movie has been compared to previous comedy/horror flicks, such as Scream and Evil Dead, noted for having "plenty of hyuks to match the yuks."
By its title, you would think this movie is pretty cliché. A cabin in the woods with horror around; it sounds like the description of a million other campy, B-movie horror flicks. The "woods" and the horror genre go hand in hand like a demonstrative woman falling for a wayward dude and a Katherine Heigl movie. Just because there have been far too many cabin-in-the-woods horror movies doesn't mean all of them were bad (and even the bad ones are good in a cheesy way).
Here are our top 10 "cabin in the woods" horror flicks.
10. There's Nothing Out There
Woo-hoo! Spring break! Oh wait, no...When a bunch of rowdy teens do almost anything for spring break, it is guaranteed to be a nightmare. When a bunch of rowdy teens head to a cabin by a lake deep in the forest, well, someone's getting killed. The movieScream
may have stolen a few ideas from this one as there is an all-knowing horror film nerd who warns the group of their coming demise. Would you listen to him? No, spring break!9. Silent Voyeur
Imagine waking up naked and alone in the middle of the Florida Everglades. You stumble through the forest confused as to how you got there and who the hell you are. Luckily, you find a little cabin complete with a man and woman holding another guy hostage with a shotgun. Perfect timing! You have no idea who they are, but they know you, sort of. The gun toters say you are one person and the hostage says you are another. Silent Voyeur is an indie flick that sadly went unnoticed. It's an excellent example of how to turn one big argument into a psychological thriller.
As it is standard in B horror films, when you wrong someone, you too shall be wronged. What is not standard is to be wronged by a Jack-O'-lantern-headed corpse, unless you are Ichabod Crane.Pumpkinhead
is about as ridiculous as any cabin the woods movie can get. Some jerk-offs on dirt-bikes kill a kid for no apparent reason and go seek refuge in a deserted cabin in a weird backwoods town. Good idea, guys. The kid's father seeks revenge from a witch (yes) who helps him resurrect ole' Pumpkinhead. Nothing good happens from there, save the majority of the dirt-bikers getting annihilated. Why did you kill that kid with your Mongooses again?7. Sleepaway Camp
NSFW There are few slasher/camp flicks that quite match the perversity ofSleepaway Camp
. Molestation, multiple personality and the most awful murder involving a curling iron and the female anatomy, are just a few of the highlights.6. The Burning
There are many tips to be learned from the movieThe Burning
. One: don't set an old camp caretaker on fire. Two: don't sneak off from camp and go skinny dipping in the lake. Three: don't ever have sex in the woods. If you really feel the need to do any of these acts, you will eventually be killed by an incinerated, revenge-hungry caretaker who goes by the name of Cropsy.
5. Cabin Fever
Cabin Fever takes the traditional cabin/woods genre and throws it on its head. This movie is wonderfully gory, but not in slasher way. The villain is not a masked, burn-victim avenger, but an infectious flesh-eating disease. It is really nasty too. After watching this group of sex-crazed teens rot before your eyes, you'll wish that Jason would show up and put them out of their misery.
4. Friday the 13th Franchise
We would be remiss to not mention Friday the 13th, especially since the first film in the series is one of the greatest cabin/woods horror movies of all time. Jason is barely even in the first movie, but he made such a lasting impression on the horror-film world that they would produce 11 more films about him, which make no sense. By movie four, it is not even the same Jason and we are not even at the infamous Crystal Lake. One thing always remains true: get nude/get slashed.
3. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre
Who is Leatherface? Why is he running around killing people with a chainsaw? And why is everyone else in this crazy little town so mean? Logic matters not in this film; it's that good.2. The Evil Dead
We've learned many lessons from slasher in the woods films, don't sneak off to do it in the woods, don't shower and don't "go find out what that noise was," among other things.The Evil Dead
was the first to warn us against noseying into ancient Sumerian texts and playing demonic tape recordings. Luckily, tape decks are a thing of the past and we doubt that anyone recording primordial incantations understands how MP3s work.
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is not your stereotypical camp/slasher movie, but it has a lot of the standard elements. What makes this one of the scariest movies of all time is that it is not that far fetched. You and some of your Yuppie friends might want to go on an outdoor adventure and you could possibly stumble into a hillbilly, inbred town. If you do find yourself in this predicament, start practicing your pig squeal because it's going to be a bumpy ride.