tek's rating:

The Cabin in the Woods (R)
Dread Central (Blu-ray/DVD); IMDb; Lionsgate; Rotten Tomatoes; Templeton Gate; TV Tropes; Wikipedia
streaming sites: Amazon; Google Play; iTunes; Max; Vudu; YouTube

This is the kind of movie that people will say you can't really explain much at all without spoiling the whole plot. Or they may complain that the trailer itself spoils the whole plot. I don't think that's really true, considering how early in the movie you at least begin to get an idea of what's really going on. It's actually like two interwoven stories, that eventually converge. There is a larger secret as to why what's really going on is going on. Or rather, what's really really going on. Of course, even when you're aware of two of the layers simultaneously, you will still have to make all kinds of wild guesses about the third layer, and at least one of those guesses will probably turn out to be right. So it's kind of predictable, and eventually a hint will be dropped that pretty much confirms the ultimate truth, well before the movie makes it perfectly obvious. So... whatever, I'm not going to spoil the third layer, but just telling you about the second layer is not, in my opinion, a spoiler by any stretch of the imagination.

So, here's the first layer: Five college students go to a cabin in the woods, for the weekend. They include a guy named Curt (Chris Hemsworth), his girlfriend Jules, their friends Dana and Marty (Fran Kranz, from Dollhouse), and Curt's newer friend Holden, whom Curt and Jules are sort of trying to set up with Dana. Long before they even get to the cabin, we're made aware of the movie's second layer, which is that there is some high tech, highly organized group that is watching and to some degree guiding the events the main five characters are experiencing. The questions you have to wonder about are, why does this organization exist? Why are they putting these kids through what amounts to a horror movie? Could they possibly have a good reason for allowing the protagonists to be horrifically killed? Beyond that, I'll just let you watch the movie and do your own speculating.

And I guess that's all I'll say about the plot itself. I will say the movie is very clever, and intriguing, and there are some very amusing parts. And of course it's genuinely frightening, in equal parts horror and psychological thriller. And of course it's kind of a mindfuck. And... you know, basically a huge "what if...?" story.

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