Welcome to Reverend Wayne Austin Goodchild's official blog. Not that there's an unofficial one...

Click WAYNE GOODCHILD IS HAUNTED to go to his Facebook page! There's good stuff on it! Honest!

...all work on here is copyright wayne goodchild, unless otherwise stated, you cheeky monkeys...

Sunday, 22 April 2012


SHUT UP! I'll tell you why. I hate that it's the sort of film that needs to be seen, but the reasons why it should be seen can't be talked about because that would utterly spoil it. Before I go on, I'd like to point you in the direction of Alex Kane's review/opinion of it, because I think it acts as a nice counterpoint to what I'm about to say.

Say what you will about the film, this is a brilliant poster. OR IS IT?
Here's what I can tell you: a bunch of "college kids" go to the titular cabin. When one of them recites a passage from a creepy diary, things go south pretty darn quick. Honestly, after (inadvertently) catching the trailer, I thought I'd figured it all out...but I hadn't! Let me be frank: [The] Cabin in the Woods isn't the most amazing film in the world, and I don't think it 'rewrites the script' of horror films to quite the extent that some people say, but it is bloody good fun, and does some truly unexpected things...but that's more to how utterly fkkking mental those things are than anything. And that's as much as I'm going to "divulge". So there.

CABIN does toy with convention, though anyone familiar with the work of film-makers Josh Whedon and Drew Goddard will spot repeated/common themes and ideas used here which dilutes the impact a bit. The very start of the film introduces us to the 'world' this film inhabits, as well as giving the horror world one of the best credit sequences I've ever seen - I'm referring to when the actual title pops up. It scared the shit out of me haha

I'd like to make an aside on 'hype' - I touched on this in a previous post about the NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET remake, in that it's sometimes best to leave a considerable amount of time between a film's release and when you see it, to create a 'buffer' between expectation and enjoyment. I watched CABIN with a group of friends last Sunday, and that undoubtedly adds to the enjoyment factor of a film, but I honestly think the only thing that might 'spoil' the impact of CABIN is if it really does create a genre/sub-genre/movement of 'nuts to this!' films, which I do doubt (considering how often budgets stymie the creative process/how studio meddling 'tones down' ideas, and all the rest of it). I think it'll have the same impact in two years as if you saw it right now. It would be nice if it proves me wrong, but we'll see.

Bill Moseley has an awesome cameo as a hook-handed killer. OR DOES HE?
Alex makes note of the comedy aspect outweighing the horror, which I am inclined to agree with. At one point near the beginning, I found the characters almost unbearably interchangeable and unrealistic - they're ALL swapping witty banter and uttering snappy one liners, and it felt terribly forced. Thankfully, as the film progresses, their roles become more refined/defined - I am aware this may have been the point, but I still don't think starting a film with unlikeable characters is a smart move.

I also completely agree with Alex's point that what we don't see is scarier than what we do. I love a lot of older fiction by writers such as Algernon Blackwood et al and that way of thinking has been a gold standard for horror writers for years. However, I am also a huge fan of in-your-face monster stories/nature-runs-amok/giant creatures, so I'm equally happy to watch some terrible creature go nuts in full view. If the point of a film/story is one thing, but it does the other, I'm disappointed, but I don't think CABIN is one of these. It's cheeky in its intent at points, but I was never convinced it'd be one more than the other. That's not to say it is either of these things. Or maybe it is.

Following on from this, and massaging my own ego (sort of) - I recently discovered a review for an anthology I'm in, that mentions my story as being "bad", not because it's badly written or anything like that, but because it's "TOO fantastic". The reviewer had previously expressed a clear delight in an earlier story of mine (for 'freaking her out'), which made me consider the themes and comparisons. Both involve the destruction of a small town, though one is done via undead insects, and the other a hellish carnival. I actually thought the carnival story is the most realistic/most obviously grounded in reality, yet that's the one she disliked.

I think this (and things mentioned in Alex's post) shows that different people have different perceptions of reality. That could be the start to a particularly deep and philosophical debate, but let's leave that sort of thing for people with an entire alphabet after their name. CABIN asks questions of reality, which is perhaps the aspect I enjoyed the most about it. It's clearly not set in ours, but then, maybe it is. I suppose it depends on how 'fantastic' you're willing to let things get. Go see CABIN and decide for yourself.

The best scene was the one in which Screamin' Meemie appears. OR WAS IT?
As a separate bit to this post, I'm working on my own website - a proper one, with a real domain name and everything. It'll be unveiled next weekend! Whilst working on it, I was listening to lastfm, and discovered that Justin Broadrick, from Godflesh, has a new project on the go called Pale Sketcher. I really like it! Here's an awesome track off his current ep:

You can also download this as an mp3 from HERE, which happens to be the home of one of my favourite bands, Skeletons and the Kings of All Cities. If you like African hi-life guitars, nightmare jazz and baroque Americana, check them out too!

No comments:

Post a Comment