“The Cabin in the Woods” Description
The Cabin in the Woods 1. Joss Whedon says that ‘The Cabin in the Woods’ is “your basic horror movie taken apart; five kids go to a cabin in the woods to have a fun weekend of partying and possibly sex… and are therefore dismembered”. Whedon and Goddard have in essence tried to create a movie with roots tied to the horror genre; it is simply your common slasher movie where the characters are killed off one by one till there is either one person left or none for that matter. The Cabin in the Woods’ also has ties to other genres such as comedy, this can be seen in scenes such as where they are all sitting around in the main room, playing truth or dare, and Jules is dared to kiss the wolfs head on the wall, also in the scene where Marty has a bong that can retract into a coffee mug. ‘The Cabin in the Woods’ turns the horror genre on its head. The film is a satire and pays homage to some of the great scary movies from the past such as Sam Raimi’s ‘Evil Dead’ and also Dario Argento’s ‘Suspira’.
Another genre that is incorporated into the movie is sci-fi. We see this when Marty and Dana descend in the lift to where the scientists are, we then see various ‘nightmare’ characters with some being human and the majority being made up creatures, this is part of the sci-fi genre as it usually contains monsters and mythical creatures that are not found in real life and questions normality. 2.
The narrative structure of ‘The Cabin in the Woods’ is linear. It starts with equilibrium where everything is going well, this is seen when all of the 5 are meeting up together getting prepared to start on their journey. This is then followed by disruption where the first character is killed off which would be Jules. The quest for restoration is found in the scene where Dana and Holden go into the lift and look to stop all of it.
The equilibrium being restored can be seen for two sides, one being that it is restored as the operation is shut down, but the other side being that it isn’t restored as the whole world ends because of the ‘gods’ that are unleashed. 3. There are many different representations of gender in ‘The Cabin in the Woods’. Firstly, the two women, Jules and Dana, are defined as The Whore and The Virgin which is two opposite ends of the spectrum whose deaths are meant to serve as bookends for the others.
The order of deaths is irrelevant except in the case of the women. Jules, as the corrupted whore, has to die first, and Dana, the Virgin, has to die last, that’s if she dies at all. As Hadley says, “The virgin’s death is optional as long as it’s last. ” The female characters are defined only by their sexuality; nothing else about them really matters. In certain scenes Laura Mulvey’s theory of the ‘male gaze’ is prevalent. When Dana is getting undressed in her room, Holden finds out that he can see through a window into her room, but she can’t.
We see the camera follow Dana up and down as she takes off her clothes, then the camera switches back round to Holden, who we see watching her but trying to look away at the same time. Still, the men don’t fare much better with their prescribed roles. They are given the roles of The Athlete, The Scholar, and The Fool. The Athlete is your typical American jock who has a naturally athletic and muscly body and loves sports. The scholar is represented as being a book worm whose only passion is education and reading books and the fool is represented as being basically dumb.