‘The Cabin in the Woods’ Spoilers Discussion

Published 2 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 8:08 am,

The Cabin in The Woods Spoilers The Cabin in the Woods Spoilers Discussion

While our readers are already talking about this movie in the comments section of our Cabin in the Woods review, this is the place where you can discuss The Cabin in the Woods spoilers without concerns about ruining the movie for folks who haven’t seen it yet.

If you’re posting comments here, assume that anyone in the conversation has seen the movie – if you haven’t seen the movie, we would recommend you don’t read the comments here until you have. 

We’ve set up a poll below where you can rate The Cabin in the Woods for yourself. Other than that, feel free to discuss the film and all its surprises!

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  1. the director clearly states in the end of the film while standing on the altar that every culture is different… every culture requires a different sacrificial offering… but all have one thing in common… punishment of youth.

  2. I think that the point was nobody really fits into these stereotypical roles and thus they had to artificially be made to fit the roles through chemicals etc. For example, Dana mentioned that Jules was a doctor (or in med school). Thus, probably any of them could have been the scholar as all showed they were smart in some way.

    With regards to Dana being a virgin, at the end when Dana questions Sigourney Weaver about this, Sigourney says, “Well we take what we can get.” Thus, Dana has likely engaged in some forms of sexual activity, but not the sex act that many consider to be the definite marker of losing your virginity.

    • I think it was more that she was sexually reserved. Maybe only sleeping with the professor, and not quick to jump in bed with someone else. So close to a virgin.

      • Agreed. I think Dana was definitely NOT a virgin in the physical sense (she says as much), but that she was sexually reserved. Or, based on how many strings the puppeteers were pulling, she was simply the best fit for the role of “Virgin”.

  3. OK, had to jump in. I really feel the “1998″ comment was a Noodle Incident. No a reference to something specifc, but instant backstory and depth with a throw away comment…

    IMDB has a great work-up of the monsters…

    Also, something I saw, cameos from all over the Whedonverse. Fran Kranz (Dollhouse) and Amy Acker (Angel) were huge. Tom Lenk, who played the intern, was off Buffy. I didn’t see anyone from Firefly or Dr. Horrible…almost thought the guard that reported on them leaving their home in the beginning looked like Nathan Fillion, but I haven’t seen that verified anywhere. Did I miss them or were they not there?

    • Love the Calvin and Hobbes reference … just sayin’. :)

      • Theres a Calvin and Hobbes reference?

        • “The Noodle Incident” is mentioned numerous times throughout Calvin and Hobbes as something disastrous that happened, but is never explained or elaborated on. It’s simply there for humor and to arouse the reader’s curiosity.

          Unless there’s a different “Noodle Incident” somewhere in pop culture that I’m not understanding :P

          • It’s a bonafide “trope” now. I think Calvin and Hobbes gave it the name, but probably Big Tex is referring to tvtropes.org

    • There were (atleast) 3 actors in there who had previously been in some of the Stargate tv series: Scientist “Lindsey Novak” from a few episodes of Stargate SG-1, and Adam Brody and Dale Volker from Stargate: Universe. Unfortunately I don’t know the actors’ names off the top of my head, but being a long time Stargate fan it gave me a nice wide smile… on top of everything else in the movie making me smile, ofcourse :)

    • @Big Tex

      Actually, the guy in the beginning didn’t look like Nathan Fillion in my opinion. I thought he looked like the guy who played Wash in Firefly/Serenity and Tucker and Dale versus evil Alan Tudyk.

      But speaking of Nathan Filion, I looked at his IMDB and noticed that he’s in the next Percy Jackson movie… :-D

  4. The 1998 incident could have been the t-virus breaking out in resident evil??

  5. Also don’t forget the strangers reference.

    • The white masks? Was that a Strangers reference? I thought it was a reference to Livide…

  6. I loved the movie, just had one question in regards to the Buckners.

    I’ve seen it once, so if I missed something obvious please let me know. It seems like from the get go it was predetermined to have the Buckners (redneck zombies) picked as the monster. Why call it the Buckner place, have this backstory of a dysfunctional hillbilly pyscho family, and then select say, the Hellraiser-look alike character? It would not have fit the set up at all. I think they would have been better off not even mentioning the backstory of the Cabin or referring to the Buckner name (either the cabin or zombie family). Say the Merman was selected, would his name have been Buckner the Merman? I don’t know, that bit just didn’t make much sense and could have been written much better.

    • When they are down in the cellar, they choose who their killers will be.

      Because Dana read from the Buckner girls diary, they got her. If they would have done more with the music box with the ballerina, they would have got the sarlac ballerina face.

      The Buckner’s were not predetermined, which is why they were taking bets on who they would end up picking.

      • Yes, I know all that.

        You seem to be missing the point that they referred to it as the Buckner place and it’s history BEFORE they even showed up, hence my original question that you didn’t answer.

        • Because the Latin was read unleashing the Buckners, that is the only back story we got to hear. I’m sure if another monster would have been selected we would have gotten some kind of explanation. It really would be cool to see a bunch of alternate plot lines on the DVD, but the cost to make something like that would be insane.

          • I mean before the college kids even showed up at the cabin or the Latin was read, it was referred to as the Buckner place while they were on their way traveling to it.

            • Because regardless of whether or not they chose the Buckner’s as their “killers”, it would still be the Buckner house. The only difference would be that it would just be a regular house. My father’s house is still “The ____ House” regardless of whether he’s a murdering psychopath or not.

            • Probably because it would break the mood/archetype to have the Harbinger refer to ‘the creepy place up the road that no one keeps’ rather than ‘the Buckner place’.

              The name was given by the project (sacrifice) team, who probably would not have tried to get away with ‘the sugur plum fairy cottage’ in their planning… but they did have the Buckners in their ‘stable’.

              Indeed, maybe the Buckners did originate there before they became zombies. Stranger things have happened (in films).

          • actually in reference to the dvd having the extras being cost prohibitive. Maybe not totally you just have to be creative. If you can convince Joss or Drew to write up 5 lines of the other four scenarios, I bet Joss could get Seth Greene to do Robot Chicken versions of them

    • It would still be the buckner place, even if the buckners weren’t selected. The merman would come from the lake, etc…

      Also would like to point out that what the ancients required werent just blood, but the psychic energy of fear released by the victims through subjects of nightmares, the ancients relished slumbering in nightmares WITHIN nightmares.

  7. Loved the film, but my only (currently – I just saw it) complaint was the big arm at the end. Am I the only one who that the elder gods should’ve been more… tentacle-y. I couldn’t help but think of the Lovecraftian Cthulu mythos when they were discussing the elder gods. So, my only complaint – needed more tentacles.

    • I agree. Especially after Sigourney’s dire warning that as horrible as the monsters were, what came before was even WORSE. If I were to get a choice regarding my agonizing death, I’d much rather be smashed by that giant glowing fist than chewed on, swallowed, dismembered or gored by just about anything in the “Costco of Death” scene.

      • I liked the big arm at the end because it was quite literaly the “Hand of God”

        • If god was a tenticle creature than you’d think the god would create after themselves. Meaning were replicas of gods since were smartest of animal kindom

    • The image at the end with the hand was the ‘Titan’s’ of Greek myth. The god’s that created the god’s. I think Whedon chose the right look and this is what he was getting at.

    • Why would the gods be “tentacle-y”? That would take away from the realness that is the gods. Unless you’re into Eqyptian gods crap, The idea of “human” gods just hits home better.

  8. The sketch of her ‘professor’ at the start was a sketch of Stephen King (I posted a reply about it to a previous comment asking about the relevance of the sketch.) In this metaverse where the gods are the audience, Sigourney is the ‘Director’ of this ‘film’ etc – then Stephen King is the ‘Professor’ of the Horror genre that everyone studies.

    • Good one that kinda clears things up for me^^^^

    • I actually stated in the beginning of the movie that it looked like Stephen King in the sketch. Nice touch.

    • I actually stated that in the beginning of the movie that it looked like Stephen King in the sketch. Nice touch.

  9. They five characters embody archetypes, not stereotypes. Dana is “The Virgin”, but one of the first things we learn about her is she slept with her college professor. Marty is “The Fool”, yet he displays greater foresight and wisdom than his peers. Plus, his marijuana (which should make him more stupid) immunizes him to the chemicals in the air, making him more conscientious of what’s going on. He astutely observes that Curt (“The Athlete”) is on academic scholarship, and Jules (“The Whore”), never behaved like such a “celebutard” before this weekend. And Holden (the most subtle exception to the rule), is “The Scholar” a.k.a. Decent Sensitive Guy, yet has an inner bloodsheddy battle when seeing Dana stripping before the two-way mirror, and once he starts kissing her, has a “husband bulge”. He’s conflicted, between two halves of self. Nobody is 100% Type, none of the characters precisely fit the personas they’re assigned to, which is why the government has to work with what they’ve got.

    What I like most about the film is that none of the people are villains. They’re just trying to do what they think is right. Sitterson and Hadley are trying to save the world. Marty and Dana are trying to protect themselves and each other. The ultimate question – Should you kill one or allow millions to die? – has been presented by a lot of previous Joss Whedon stories. Buffy killing Angel, Buffy killing herself, Giles killing Ben, Doyle killing himself, Spike killing himself, Angel enabling Fred’s death – all sacrifices made for the greater good.

    But the closest Cabin comparison would be the end of Angel’s fourth season. When Jasmine comes to LA, she psychologically enchants people into a state of perfect happiness. The end result is world peace, but the cost is the victims she must eat to maintain her power. Regular sacrifices of many. When she defends this to Angel, she says she had to kill thousands to save millions, and isn’t this preferable? Sitterson and Hadley would probably agree, since that’s their job. Kill a few to protect the rest. Angel counters that people have a right to be free, to own their lives, to be in control of their decisions. This is where Marty would stand on the issue. He’s of the opinion that the system should be overhauled if people have to be sacrificed to keep it intact. Humanity should not buy its passage in blood (yet another reference, Mal in Serenity: “So me and mine gotta lay down and die so you can live in your better world?”) Even early on, whilst rolling a joint on the ride over, Marty says that society MUST be permitted to crumble.

    Whedon and Goddard show us both sides of the coin, philosophically. It’s really interesting.

  10. I have a little difficulty imagining the same story if they’d chosen the conch shell or ballerina music box… it’s somehow just way less scary.

  11. To be honest i was constantly awaitin the apperence of a wolf, ram and a hart symbol.

    Felt very Angel, the whole film was a mess.

    Aload of rubbish and a waste of my time.

  12. I’m assuming the Japan version with school children was a nod to Battle Royale!!

  13. I just want to know what is the purpose of the “movie” setup behind the story why follow the traditional horror flick I thought this movie was about a futuristic reality competition where the movies are now real life setups? I was thrown way off by the ending ?

  14. I saw this movie yesterday and absolutely loved it. Two of my friends who are also genre fans hated it, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was a bit disappointed that the monster “choice” ended up being the relatively dull backwoods-zombie family, but later in the film when Dana’s hand began moving toward the “System Purge” button I realized the film was about to get extremely awesome… and it lived up to my expectations. I was especially glad to get a chance to see the much-referenced merman in his fantastic cameo appearance.

    I searched for post-movie-viewer comments (leading me to this site) specifically because I was also wondering about the “power rerouted from upstairs” comment. Sitterson’s reaction seemed more extreme than a simple “one of the kids messed up the wiring” comment would justify. (I suppose he could have been reacting to the possibility that someone “upstairs” had located the underground facility). While I agree that it makes sense that Marty messed up the cave-in when he pulled the wiring askew, I thought I noticed additional evidence of some internal meddling. Didn’t one of the techs make a comment to the effect that despite the fact that they’d doctored Marty’s pot to make him stupid, somehow it had also been modified to make him immune to the other drugs? It made me wonder if some uber-director was tweaking things in every country to be sure that all the sacrifices failed. I’ll have to watch the film again to see if I misunderstood/misheard the reference to Marty’s pot. This film stuck in my head more than anything else has in a long time… and it’s the first film in years that I’ve wanted to see more than once in the theater.

    • Steve, that’s a really interesting point. It definitely seemed like too many things “just happened” to go wrong in the system mechanics to be coincidence. Considering that Goddard and Whedon have called the move a “love/hate letter to horror movies”, it seems like there’s some unseen hand manipulating the manipulators. Considering it’s a movie that decides it’s time for the whole world to end, I think there’s a much bigger cultural comment to be teased from this whole thing.

      • I found a similar thread on another site, and someone else also mentioned the pot and the mysterious electrical failure. He also pointed out that the key to the “System Purge” button was conveniently left out for Dana to use.

        I loved that button. The Giant Red Button. Super-obvious, clearly labeled and ridiculously easy to access. What zoo or jail would EVER install such a thing? “Yeah, just in case you need to unleash every blood-thirsty monster at once, INSIDE the facility, just push this here button. We made it really big, labeled it clearly, and just in case you need to use it quickly, be sure to keep the security key right here.”

    • You’ve got it all wrong. They said that Marty had a stash that they hadn’t found and his stash (untreated pot) was counter-acting the effects of the pot they had switched in. So all of the pot Marty was smoking wasn’t the treated stuff.

      As for tinkering from upstairs, that was from a time when Marty was supposed to be dead and they were actively watching the remaining survivors. Thus, the power re-route from upstairs signaled that one of those presumed dead was actually still alive.

  15. After reading all the hype regarding this picture I was really loooking forward to seeing it and wanted to really like it..
    Wow, what a dissapointment, a complete mess, after a first half I completely lost the feel for it and could not understand if I was watching a horror, a drama, a spoof or a comedy.
    Despite all the major claims for its originality, which I was hoping for, it fails again.
    The main concept is obviously taken from an older low budget horror film called Cube Zero, except that one actually made sense at the end. I thought the major problem with this film is that it tries to be so many things at the same time, instead they should have focused on a single story.
    Anyways, don’t waste your time on this, there are much better horror flicks out there.

    • Cool story bro.

  16. I’ve gone through all of the comments and haven’t seen this posted yet:

    What do you all make of the discussion at the start of the film about the head sacrificer discussing baby-proofing the house and getting ready for a new baby?

    In keeping with the audience-as-gods theory, it seems like this scene is confirming how most horror films are overly confined and treat the audience like children. So when the main plot with the teens begins, it plays with those same child-proof conventions that are easy to deal with and safe. Throughout the course of the film, the baby-proofing is removed and the way is paved towards a freer genre not confined by limitations of cliches.

  17. Does anyone else think that the cabin looks exactly like the cabin from The Evil Dead-from the outside at least?

  18. Am I the only on eggar thinks Chris Hemsworth death was one of the funniest deaths in a horror movie? No mister killed him in a monster infested movie, but an invisible wall/force field does the job pretty funny as hell. He has this epic speech saying he’ll come back even if he’s limping and his ass flys into a wall. I LOL’ed so hard in the theater and from then on I’ve been laughing all day and night!

    Also, with reference to the stereotypes; each person was different to what they were labelled as. Watch the movie closely again to view each characters movements and statements and you could be the judge yourself. I know that there was no “fool” cuz Marty figured out everything even while stoned so regardless the world would have been destroyed definitively with or without killing Marty.

    End of Line.

  19. Several allusions to a myriad of interpretations, this movie has one metaphor that stands out for me: every character represents a demographic in our society and the “establishment” is the machination of our almost ritualistic proclivity to sacrifice lives in order to “maintain our way of life as we know it.”

    The contrast of brutality with the mundane management of going about setting the workings of systematized processing of peril, as shown by the blasé “technicians of sacrifice” underlines how the world works.

  20. Has anyone else noticed the Boomer from Left 4 Dead in the cage room, when the camera does a big zoom-out?

    • Totally! Best easter egg yet!

      • Saw it right away! Somebody’s gotta make an infographic or something so we can get a good look at every monster in there. Catch some that I missed.

  21. Hello,

    the idea of interpretation of CINW as the metaphor of horror movie as genre is in my oppinion right. The metacinematographic refferences are obvious and in the whole film you can find some ostentatious and very sophisticated allusions on the horror movies (but it´s not original at all, it´s such a cliche).. But I would like to see this movie in earthbound way and want to accept the main premise of the story. For me the Ancient one is „real“ monstrum occupying the fictional cinematic world that has been created by the real director. If you accept the theory of Ancient One = the Audience, then you needn´t to solve some flaws in the plot and logical errors of the story. But in any event I enjoyd the movie very much and appreciate it very high.
    P. S. I appologize for my lack of ingenuity. Can somebody tell me what was the nature of the monsters whose rampage dominated to the movie in its second half? Were they created by the Company or were in some special way connceted to the Ancient One?

  22. During the scene when the monsters are trying to break into the “control room”, could anyone see what the sign said that the intern was holding on one of the tv’s?

    • “i’m trapped in a closet.
      Dragonbat has my scent.
      Please send help!”

      • Thank you.

        I thought it was some sort of easter egg, but I guess it was just a joke.

        • An Easter egg kind of does show up in that the monitor shot where the chick shoots herself – its from Serenity. But yeah Roonald the intern is just a freeze frame joke. Still awesome.

  23. More about the cabin in the woods and other movies visit
    http://movies21movies.blogspot.com/2012/05/cabin-in-woods.html

  24. This movie was awesome in my opinion. It was funny, scary, and action filled. In the beginning, you wouldn’t think it was a horror film, more of a comedy, then somewhere in there squeezed in some suspense with not only horror,but lots funny action. Marty (Fran Kranz) was hilarious; “Poptart?!” and how he whips out his ‘coffee cup pipe’ and whacks the zombie with it.
    At the end when he (Marty) kept his life instead of dying for the rest of the world, I thought that was selfish. So if Dana (Kristen Connolly)killed him, only he would have died (the rest of the world unharmed). And if he didn’t, he dies anyway, but with the rest if the world. So if he was going to die either way, why would he choose to the way of ending all humanity?! What about his family and all his friends? That I thought was stupid. It was a good ending, just selfish of the character to do so. I give this film 4.5 stars out of 5 stars. Great movie.

    • l reckon the statement was humanity isn’t worth it “You’re right. humanity. time to give someone else a chance” or something like that

  25. Tiptoe through the window
    By the window, that is where I’ll be
    Come tiptoe through the tulips with me

    Oh, tiptoe from the garden
    By the garden of the willow tree
    And tiptoe through the tulips with me

    Knee deep in flowers we’ll stray
    We’ll keep the showers away
    And if I kiss you in the garden, in the moonlight
    Will you pardon me?
    And tiptoe through the tulips with me

  26. THAT WAS THE BEST FREAKING HORROR MOVIE!!!!! I’ve seen most horror movies and find them completely lame. This one was soo awesome!! Like it could really happen.No stupid bimbos going upstairs when the should’ve went out the front door,everyone splitting up willingly when everyone knows strength in numbers,or lame endings where they do what’s morally right. I soo would’ve let the giant evil gods free too!!

  27. Haven’t seen the movie as I can do horror on paper far better than on the screen, but from the comments made the plot reminds me a lot of “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas” by Le Guin.

  28. I loved the ending, thought it was the best possible one. But am I the only one who was surprised that the Director’s death didn’t complete the ritual?
    Great cameo by Sigourney Weaver, by the way. I knew it was her voice on the intercom. I KNEW IT!

    • The Director was too old to fullfil the youth and innocence criteria.

  29. …is it just me…or is the whole thing riding on the outline of midnight meat train of ryuhei kitamura…the idea of having to kill a few people to appease the baddies so that they stay hidden.