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Joss Whedon


Zack Snyder steps away from 'Justice League' after personal tragedy

Joss Whedon will finish the movie
May 23
// Matt Liparota
Justice League director Zack Snyder has stepped away from finishing the film to spend time with his family following the death of his daughter, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Joss Whedon will put the finishing touches o...

Joss Whedon will direct a standalone Batgirl movie for the DCEU

Mar 30 // Hubert Vigilla
This also makes me wonder if this will feature a Dick Grayson/Nightwing appearance to set up the Nightwing movie that was announced a month ago. Is this the start of the DCEU Bat Family sub-universe, aka the DCEUBFSU? Whedon makes sense for Batgirl. The creator and driving force behind Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a solid choice to steer a Batgirl story in a reliable direction. I wonder what iteration of Batgirl it will be, though. Will it be the new hipster Batgirl of Burnside (the Brooklyn of Gotham City) who sports the bossest new costume around, or will this be a more classic iteration of Barbara Gordon? We'll report more details as they arise. What do you think of this news? Is the DCEU doing something right? Will this wind up delayed by the summer? Let us know in the comments. [via Variety]
Joss Whedon Batgirl photo
Variety reports that Joss Whedon will direct a standalone Batgirl movie for Warner Bros. and the DCEU. Whedon will also write the film and serve as producer. Variety notes that comics writer and producer Geoff Johns will be o...


Whedon reveals that Avengers: Age of Ultron alternate ending

You can probably guess what it is
May 05
// Matt Liparota
WARNING: Big old major spoilers for Avengers: Age of Ultron lie within; if you're one of the five people in the world who hasn't seen it yet, consider yourself warned.   One of the biggest shockers of Joss Whedon's Aveng...

Whedon: Edgar Wright's Ant-Man script was the best Marvel ever had

"I donít know where things went wrong. But I was very sad."
Apr 22
// Matt Liparota
Avengers: Age of Ultron is almost upon us (and in some parts of the world already is), so it's just about time to start frothing at the mouth over the next big Marvel thing, which happens to be Peyton Reed's Ant-Man. Before a...

Avengers: AOU photo
Avengers: AOU

Joss Whedon says Avengers: Age of Ultron won't have a post-credits scene

Apr 08
// Nick Valdez
With many rumors and news floating around, it's hard to gauge what's real and what's false with these Marvel films. But I'm very inclined to believe the director of one of the films himself. Speaking with Entertainment Weekly...

Joss Whedon discusses why Ant-Man won't show up in Age of Ultron

"It didn't make sense to introduce a third scientist"
Feb 24
// Matt Liparota
Comic book fans can be a protective lot, especially when it comes to their favorite properties and characters. It was no surprise, then, that some were upset when Joss Whedon announced a while back that the Avengers' longtime...

Joss Whedon really not likely to return to Marvel Cinematic Universe

In Whedon we trust
Feb 03
// Flixist Staff
It appears that basically being the architect for an entire cinematic universe is a bit time consuming and exhausting. Joss Whedon is currently wrapping up Avengers: Age of Ultron, and he's pretty sure he will not be returnin...
Age of Ultron Teaser photo
Leaks of SHIELD
Well I guess no one has to watch Agents of SHIELD on the 28th anymore. Thanks to a snafu leading to a leaked teaser earlier today (which we didn't post because Flixist doesn't dabble in the dark legal arts), Marvel has gone ...


Joss Whedon called in to fix some of Thor: The Dark World

Because Joss Whedon makes everything better
Sep 18
// Matthew Razak
Thor: The Dark World's director is gladly admitting to SFX Magazine that Joss Whedon came down from on high to help him iron out some kinks that weren't working too well with the film. Basically he says that Whedon is like a ...
Avengers 2's New Name photo
UMAS: 2015 now becomes A:AOU
During Marvel's big San Diego Comic Con panel on Saturday (which brought lots of news for Marvel's Phase Two including Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and Guardians of the Galaxy), Joss Whedon annou...

Review: Much Ado About Nothing

Jun 07 // Matthew Razak
[embed]215029:39763:0[/embed] Much Ado About NothingDirector: Joss WhedonRating: PG-13Release Date: June 7, 2013 (limited); wider release June 21, 2013 Since I enjoy Shakespeare's comedies more than his dramas, because I'm uncultured and such, Much Ado About Nothing is my favorite of his plays (followed closely by A Midsummer Night's Dream). I've seen it on stage a few times and, of course, watched the Kenneth Branagh version a few times over (Keanu ain't that bad). So the idea of Joss Whedon gathering together all his favorite actors and making my favorite Shakespearean play into a movie was better than almost everything ever. It's easy to report that Shakespeare's writing still stands the test of time, and a pleasure to report that Whedon has put together a fantastic interpretation of the play. Shooting entirely in black and white and in his own home over the course of a week in what the cast has basically described as a party, Whedon creatively interprets Much Ado About Nothing into a darker and more sexually charged story than we're use to. While the comedy points are definitely the main thrust of the movie, Whedon take s a lot more care to develop the character's motivations and interactions while updating the play to a modern context (though it could have easily taken place at any time). I'll eschew plot description since you should already know the classic tale of absurd misunderstanding and quick witted dialog. In case you were confused there's plenty of great lines here that are still hilarious despite having been written many, many years ago. Whedon imbibes them with new life, however, turning even some of the most banal scenes into either comic wonders or powerhouse dramatic sequences. There are some seriously impressively done scenes throughout the film that lend a new depth to the play and a bit of fun. It helps that the cast is clearly having a blast. Comprised of a bunch of Whedon's favorite actors from his plethora of films and shows (Nathan Fillion, Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Fran Kranz), it's basically a walk down Whedon memory lane. Most of the cast does admirably, though for some it's pretty clear that Shakespeare isn't their forte. The most surprising successes are Fran Kranz, who busts out of his typecast nerdiness into a surprisingly strong romantic lead; and Nathan Fillion, who is beyond hilarious in his role as a bumbling police office. Acker and Denisof are also perfectly matched as the constantly bickering Beatrice and Benedick. The most disappointing is Sean Maher who doesn't seem to get comfortable with the evil Don John until halfway through the film, though he does get one of the best sight gags.  It's not all his fault, though. The movie was shot in a week, andthat is pretty clear. It's a simple fact that you need a bit more time to get Shakespeare down, especially with the majority of the cast having never performed it professionally. What this leads to is it being very obvious which scenes were shot early and which were shot later. The cast clearly got into a rhythm as the shoot went on and it makes some scenes far better than others. It's hard to fault them for not mastering Shakespeare right away, and once they do get into a groove and during some of Whedon's more impressively done scenes, it is easily some of the most enjoyable Shakespeare you'll see. The downside is that the movie never really goes above being enjoyable to being truly great, but considering the time frame and DIY nature it probably was never meant to. What's obvious here is that Joss Whedon is a great director, Shakespeare is a great writer and if you get a cast together that really clicks you're going to make a fun movie. While it's easy to interpret Shakespeare in a variety of ways that I wouldn't deign to call any version of a play the definitive version, this is definitely one you'll want to see. Hubert Vigilla: There's a strange and undeniable joy in Much Ado About Nothing. From scene to scene, from beginning to end, there's a sense that everyone involved in the production was having a great time. The 12-day shoot was probably more like a 12-day party, and I almost got the sense that the production embodied the old-fashioned ethos of those early Judy Garland/Mickey Rooney films: let's get our buddies together and make a gosh darn movie! The two couples -- Beatrice (Amy Acker) & Benedick (Alexis Denisof), Hero (Jillian Morgese) & Claudio (Fran Kranz) -- are well cast and serve as solid examples of Shakespeare's parallelism and contrast when romantic pairs are used. Nathan Fillion bumbles about and steals his scenes when Dogberry arrives. I think my only gripe is that some of the score sounds like it's from a made-for-TV movie, but even this helps feed into the quick and playful spirit of the film. Much Ado About Nothing is a source of constant delight. 81 -- Great
Much Ado Review photo
Whedon takes aim at the bard
How do you follow up the biggest blockbuster in cinematic history? One crammed full of superheroes and special effects and big name actors? A film that epitomizes Hollywood in all its glory and all its faults? If you're Joss ...

UMAS: 2015 photo
UMAS: 2015

Whedon confirms Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver for Avengers 2

Whedon just does what he wants.
May 20
// Nick Valdez
While a rumor that Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver (Magneto's son and daughter, which means that mutants would exist within the Whedonverse) were joining the Avengers for UMAS: 2015 has been floating around the Internet for som...

NYC: Spend an evening with Joss Whedon - 5/29

May 16 // Hubert Vigilla
THE FILM SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER presents An Evening with Joss Whedon Wednesday, May 29 Special filmmaker talk will follow a sneak preview of Whedon’s upcoming film MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING New York, NY (May 16, 2013) – The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced today An Evening with Joss Whedon at the Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street). Writer-director Whedon will take part in a wide-ranging conversation about his career—from his Oscar-nominated screenplay for TOY STORY to his cult TV shows like “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and recent blockbuster hits like THE AVENGERS. The filmmaker conversation will follow a special sneak preview of his bold and modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, opening at the Film Society on Friday, June 7. A multi-hyphenate with successes that few peers can match on film, television, and the internet, Whedon counts among his accomplishments being the creator of beloved TV programs such as "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (1996-2003), “Angel” (1999-2004), "Firefly" (2002-2003), and “Dollhouse” (2009-2010); an Oscar-nominated screenwriter of TOY STORY (1995) and co-writer of the subversive genre bender, THE CABIN IN THE WOODS (2012); the creative force behind the internet sensation Supervillain Musical, "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog"; and, most recently, as the director of the third highest grossing motion picture of all-time, THE AVENGERS. With his latest film, Shakespeare's classic comedy is given a contemporary spin in Whedon's MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. Shot in just 12 days (and using the original text), the story of sparring lovers Beatrice and Benedick offers a dark, sexy and occasionally absurd view of the intricate game that is love. Starring familiar faces from previous Whedon projects like Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Nathan Fillion, Clark Gregg, Fran Kranz, Tom Lenk and Sean Maher, the film (and play) features nefarious plots and a series of comic and tragic events seem as though they may keep the anyone from truly finding happiness, but then again perhaps love may prevail. Whedon is the first third-generation TV writer, following the footsteps of both his grandfather John Whedon(“The Donna Reed Show,” “The Andy Griffith Show” and “Leave It to Beaver;”), and his father, Tom Whedon(“Alice,” “Benson,” “Golden Girls”). His writing career began with assignments on the television series, “Roseanne” and “Parenthood,” before his feature film script for BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER became a box office success in 1992. Whedon garnered an Oscar nomination for his work on TOY STORY prior to writing the script for ALIEN RESURRECTION (1997) and seeing his groundbreaking television series version of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” establish itself as a cultural touchstone. After the television run of his space western “Firefly,” and the subsequent big-screen adaptation SERENITY (2005), Whedon, along with his brothers Zack and Jed, Maurissa Tancharoen, created “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog” as an online three-part musical, originally streaming for free. The self-funded project became an unprecedented hit, eventually earning the project an Emmy for Outstanding Special Class - Short-Format Live-Action Entertainment Programs. In 2012, Whedon’s THE AVENGERS broke box office records. As his adaptation of William Shakespeare’s MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING is set to debut, Whedon is at work both on the television series “The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D” and THE AVENGERS 2 from the Marvel Universe. Tickets are on sale now for both An Evening with Joss Whedon ($20.00), and the opening of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING on Friday, June 7 (general public $13.00; $9.00 for students and seniors (62+); and $8.00 for Film Society members). Visit for complete film festival information. FILM SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER Founded in 1969 to celebrate American and international cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center works to recognize and support new directors, and to enhance the awareness, accessibility and understanding of film. Among its yearly programming of film festivals, film series and special events, the Film Society presents two film festivals in particular that annually attract global attention: the New York Film Festival which just celebrated its 50th edition, and New Directors/New Films which, since its founding in 1972, has been produced in collaboration with MoMA. The Film Society also publishes the award-winning Film Comment Magazine and a year-round calendar of programming, panels, lectures, educational and transmedia programs and specialty film releases at the famous Walter Reade Theater and the new state-of-the-art Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center. The Film Society receives generous, year-round support from Royal Bank of Canada, Jaeger-LeCoultre, American Airlines, The New York Times, Stonehenge Partners, Stella Artois, the National Endowment for the Arts and New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, visit and follow #filmlinc on Twitter.
Much to do about Much Ado
Get on this, geeks! On Wednesday, May 29th, Joss Whedon will be at The Film Society of Lincoln Center for a special preview screening of Much Ado About Nothing followed by a discussion. Tix are $20 and on sale now. The film will open in New York on June 7th. For tickets and more information, visit After the cut is the official press release.


A playful poster for Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing

Apr 12
// Liz Rugg
I feel like "playful" is a pretty good way to describe director Joss Whedon's newest movie, a Shakespeare adaptation called Much Ado About Nothing. Even though it's coming from one of the most fiercely loved directors of our ...

Whedon: No Firefly Kickstarter any time soon

So you're saying there's a chance!
Mar 15
// Matthew Razak
I think that thing that instantly leaped to everyone's mind the second the Veronica Mars Kickstarter absolutely dominated everything ever was that there needs to be one for Firefly. After all, the entire cast loves it an...

Trailer: Much Ado About Nothing

Whedonites and Shakespeare fans rejoice!
Mar 08
// Liz Rugg
After director Joss Whedon's mega block-buster The Avengers last year, he decided to tone it down a bit for his next project. It's a bit of a palate cleanser - Much Ado About Nothing is an adaption of the classic Shakespeare...

Flixist Awards 2012: Best Screenplay

Which wordsmith(s) won our hearts?
Feb 26
// Nathan Hardisty
As a hopeful screenwriter, Best Screenplay is the one award I pay the most attention to in every awards. Our kind isn't so often publicly recognized, no matter how handsome we all are. Screenplays are important thou...

Joss Whedon discusses why he's on board for Avengers 2

Sep 19
// Matthew Razak
You'd think if you'd just directed the third highest box office film of all time you'd be right in line to direct its sequel once the dump truck full of money drove up to your house, but not Joss Whedon. That guy cares about ...

Disney has just confirmed (through an investors conference call, according to /Film) that Joss Whedon has definitely signed on to write and direct the sequel to the blockbuster Avengers film as well as involving himself ...


Pictures from Whedon's Much Ado remain Branaghless

Aug 02
// Jason Savior
Having shot the film Dr. Horrible-style, independently and in under two weeks, professional cool-guy-you'd-like-to-hang-with Joss Whedon has put out some new shots of his forthcoming black and white adaptation of Much Ado Abo...

Flix for Short: Scary Smash

Jul 19
// Matthew Razak
Taking a child's incoherent ramblings and turning them into an actual story isn't the newest idea on the block, but when you put Joss Whedon, Dave Foley and Kate Miucci into the mix it becomes fresh all over again. To kick o...

Book: Joss Whedon: The Complete Companion

May 01
// Geoff Henao
Joss Whedon: The Complete Companion: The TV Series, The Movies, The Comic Books, and More should be on sale as all of you read this. Unlike some of the other books we've covered, this book serves as an anthology of some of th...

Reminder: Win a MONDO poster for Cabin in the Woods!

Apr 25 // Liz Rugg
THE CABIN IN THE WOODS Poster: Artist: Phantom City Creative Edition of 350 24" x 36" Screenprint Price: $45

[Congratulations to our winner: Ben Murphy! Your prize should be in the mail! This contest is now closed, stay tuned for more soon!] I still can't believe that title is real. Yes, for real, Flixist is giving away a real Mondo...


The Invincible Iron Man vs. The Mighty Thor

Apr 17
// Hubert Vigilla
We're about two weeks away from some awesome Avengers action. In this new clip, we have Iron Man fighting Thor for reasons unknown. Of course they'll make up, play nice, and drink cocktails and mead together later in the mov...

Cabin in the Woods: The painting and the whiteboard

Apr 16 // Hubert Vigilla
From The Cabin in the Woods: The Official Visual Companion: Martin Whist on the painting: "That was fun. This poor guy who actually had to paint it, he was very classically trained, a wonderful painter. I started by giving him classical references, Gainsborough and wonderful English landscape painters, and then started adding the layer of Goya and the darker painters, and he sort of understood that, but then as we kept going on and on, he kept bringing it back to something more restrained, and I would just keep making him put more gore and more blood into it! At a certain point, he would roll his eyes. He almost couldn't do it. In the end, he was just shaking his head. 'You guys are nuts.' 'No, more gore! The dogs need to be ripping the flesh out! There needs to be pools of blood!'" From the novelization of The Cabin in the Woods by Tim Lebbon: He assumed it was an old horse-and-dog print, a country scene from a long time ago, maybe even imported from Britain. But looking closer, the detail started to stand out... and it was horrible. It was a hunting party, and most of the members were shown dismounted, their faces flushed red with rage or freshly blooded, arms raised, hands bearing curved machetes that reflected gray sunlight where they weren't also darkened with blood. At their feet were several big, vicious-looking dogs, reminding him more of the wolf's head in the living room than the family pets he was used to. And at the focus of their attention was a lamb. Scarlet clefts had been struck into its back and flanks, and one dog had its slavering jaws clamped about the poor animal's throat.   *       *       *   CONTEST REMINDER Don't forget that you have a chance to win the Mondo poster for The Cabin in the Woods. The Escher-ific limited-edition poster (pictured below) is completely sold out, so this is your chance to actually get one.

[For the next few days, we'll be looking at The Cabin in the Woods: The Official Visual Companion and the official movie novelization, both from Titan Books. The visual companion features an in-depth interview with Joss Whedo...

Cabin in the Woods: Joss & Drew on casting and dactyls

Apr 13 // Hubert Vigilla
From The Cabin in the Woods: The Official Visual Companion: How did you find your cast? GODDARD: We have great casting agents in Amy Britt and Anya Coloff, who did a lot of Joss's shows -- they worked on Buffy and Angel -- and they started scouring and then putting people in front of us. We wanted to have some fresh faces in there, just so it would make the experience better, but we didn't limit ourselves -- we looked at everyone. It's weird. It's like alchemy. You have to roll your sleeves up and just start auditioning people and start mixing people together and see who's going to fit and who's not. WHEDON: It was enormously painstaking. We went not only through dozens and hundreds of kids, but we also went through an entire casting director. We hired someone with no simpatico at all and we had to bring in Amy Britt and Anya Coloff, who've worked so well with me on so many things. So for a long while, we were panicking. Because Drew and I are both very strong believers in finding the people who can do the job right, who not only pop off the screen but just really bring the work and the craft and the ridiculous, as well as being charismatic. Drew saw Kristen [Connolly] before I did. The moment I saw Kristen, I lost it: "This is absolutely the girl." She had the courage. I was really happy that everybody else agreed with me, because I got that sick feeling you get when you just feel something strongly and you're like, "Now I have a lot of other people to approve, including my collaborator." But nobody didn't see it. Fran [Kanz] was probably the first that we had in our pocket that we both agreed was the guy. You also are looking for an ensemble, so you don't want to cast one until you have enough of the others together. Plus, for the auditions, we had written scenes for movies that didn't exist for all of them. We had someone actually turn down the role of Truman when he finally saw the script, because he had thought it was a different movie, because he thought he was reading a different script. There isn't a fake script; there are only fake sides [audition scenes]. We wrote fake sides for all of the principals. In Curt's case, it was a pterodactyl movie; in Holden and Jules's scene, about tentacles in a Jacuzzi; Marty had a monologue about something made entirely of claws. So basically, it was take the exact character that you're looking for and then put them in a different movie. This was to keep it secret so the script didn't go out to every casting agent person -- you know, trying to keep it under wraps, but still seeing what there was to see from actors. If anyone knows where we can get a copy of that pterodactyl side, we would be infinitely grateful.   *       *       *   CONTEST REMINDER Don't forget that you have a chance to win the Mondo poster for The Cabin in the Woods. The Escher-ific limited-edition poster (pictured below) is completely sold out, so this is your chance to actually get one.

[For the next few days, we'll be looking at The Cabin in the Woods: The Official Visual Companion from Titan Books. It features an in-depth interview with Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard, the film's complete screenplay, cast int...

Cabin in the Woods: Joss & Drew's writing process

Apr 13 // Hubert Vigilla
From The Cabin in the Woods: The Official Visual Companion: How long was it between the original idea and writing the first draft? GODDARD: It could have been as long as a year in terms of us talking about, "Hey, we should write a movie together!" "Hey, what if we did a horror movie?" "Yeah, that'd be fun." My memory is kind of hazy. I was writing Lost. We were just working on other stuff, and we'd trade emails and phone calls. WHEDON: It was a while. It was a long time before we had the opportunity. I had the idea for a couple of years. GODDARD: There was like a month-long period where we really got serious, talking about the story every day. "Okay, what would the story be?" "What are our character names?" and all of those things. WHEDON: We had a lot of meetings and sat down to dinner a lot of times to make sure that we were ready, and I wrote out a cast lift and an outline and the first 10 pages. GODDARD: And then after that, we made the hotel reservations. I think we checked in on a Thursday night, but we didn't write anything Thursday night. We checked in on Thursday night and then checked out Monday morning. You actually checked yourselves into a hotel together to write this? GODDARD: Yes. It's in Santa Monica somewhere. And it was great -- we had a bungalow with an upstairs and a downstairs. So I would just sit upstairs and Joss would write downstairs and I remember, we would get up at 7:00am and have breakfast and figure out the stories we wanted to deal with that day, and then he would write downstairs and I would write upstairs and we'd pass pages back and forth and we'd finish about 1:00am and we'd go to bed and then do the same thing the next day. It was very intense, but it couldn't have been more fun. Joss and I both work very well around our wives. It's not that. But when you're at a hotel, everything can be taken care of. You don't have to think about, "Where am I going to get food?" [laughs] Or "When do I have to drive to the office?" We knew we wanted to be near each other, because in order to write like this, if we had a problem, we had to be in close communication all the time. We wanted to take all the problems out of it, sort of go in a bubble, so that all you have to worry about is writing. WHEDON: You know, the dream, the fantasy -- and I've had this fantasy before, as have other writers -- is that you lock yourself in a hotel, partially because it is more exciting to say, partially because I have children, and partially because your focus is absolute. Based on the fact that we had 10 pages written, we knew we each had an obligation to turn out no less than 15 pages every day for three days in a row. And that can't be done if you have anything else to do. So when we got to the little bungalow, and he took the upstairs and I took the downstairs, we basically would talk in the morning about the acts, break it, divide it, and then go down. In a writers's room, there are hours of gossip and chatting and personal stories, and there was none of that. For three days, we never talked about anything except the story.When we'd eat, if we decided to have dinner at the restaurant of the hotel, we'd only talk about the story. We had real focus. And you remove yourself from life to get that kind of focus.   *       *       *   CONTEST REMINDER Don't forget that you have a chance to win the Mondo poster for The Cabin in the Woods. The Escher-ific limited-edition poster (pictured below) is completely sold out, so this is your chance to actually get one.

[For the next few days, we'll be looking at The Cabin in the Woods: The Official Visual Companion from Titan Books. It features an in-depth interview with Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard, the film's complete screenplay, cast int...

Review: The Cabin in the Woods

Apr 12 // Alex Katz
[embed]207387:37907[/embed] The Cabin in the WoodsDirector: Drew GoddardRating: RRelease Date: April 15 Cabin in the Woods has a seemingly familiar setup. Five pretty college kids head out to an old cabin in the middle of the woods for a weekend of drinks, drugs, and sex. There's the established couple, footballer Kurt (Chris Hemsworth, pre-Thor as the film was shot in 2009) and Jules (Anna Hutchinson), the nice guy Holden (Jesse Williams), stoner Marty (Fran Kranz enjoying his ability to walk away with basically every project he's in), and innocent, virginal Dana (Kristen Connolly). If this is looking familiar to you already, you're both right and wrong. When the gang reaches their destination, which is almost a room-for-room dead ringer for the cabin in Evil Dead, things start to get very odd very quickly. At this point, if I say anything else about the plot or its direction, I do a great movie a serious disservice. Suffice to say, the film's tagline, "You think you know the story," needs to have a big honking emphasis on the word "think," because even with what's been spoiled in the trailers, you really have no idea of what is truly going on here. The script, written by Joss Whedon and director Drew Goddard, is exactly as sharp and clever as you'd expect it to be. You've got that trademark rapid-fire Whedonesque patter, positively oozing wit. Every actor on hand does brilliantly, though the best work is being done by Fran Kranz, essentially adding a stoner bent to his character from Dollhouse to great effect. He's the most genre aware character in the film, key to the ongoing horror deconstruction found in the film, but more on that later. In traditional slasher movie fashion, no single character gets too much development or back story, since there's that looming, unspoken agreement that most of these pretty collegiates aren't going to make it out alive. There are two other standout performances, though I'm wary of sharing the exact details of their roles. Veteran character actors Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford bring a wry sense of humor to their weighty roles, evoking a bizarro-Office Space vibe in some truly horrible conditions. That's exactly as much as I can say without giving anything away. Horror deconstruction is almost a genre of its own now, with stuff like the Scream movies and the underrated classic Behind the Mask, and with good, fun reason. Horror movies are second only to romantic comedies and maybe hero's journey pictures in terms of near-universally recognizable tropes and traits. Everybody knows the one about the black guy always dying first. Everybody knows the one about the slutty girl dying and the innocent girl living. This is where the magic really happens in Cabin in the Woods. It's kicked down the door, put its feet on the coffee table, and crowned itself the new king of horror deconstruction. The film mines such wonderful material through its own unique way of lampshading the various cliches and tropes of horror, but it never gets into Scream territory, where a character mentions a trope, explains several examples of the trope in cinema, and then the trope happens in the film. With Cabin, the tropes occur, but it's all a part of the writer and director's master plan, rather than something to be explained in a "Hah hah look how intelligent we are that we know how horror films work!," manner. This is about the point in the review where I'm hitting the wall in terms of what I can comfortably share with you gentle readers without spoiling the singularly unique experience of The Cabin in the Woods. I am quite sorry, as this is going to turn into a bit of a shit review, just for this sake, but you have to understand that basically everything after the half hour mark ratchets the film up to a crazy level of intensity and weirdness while still managing to continuously build on the ideas and scenarios. This pacing continues right up until the final fifteen minutes, which features one of the wildest sequences you're going to find in any recent horror movie, all leading to a beautiful, John Carpenter-esque ending. If I say a whole lot more (and I really really reeeally want to!), I'd ruin people's enjoyment of this movie fairly deeply, and I don't want that. The Cabin in the Woods is a true original, effortlessly deconstructing the horror genre while also providing the most exciting horror movie in years. Everyone's going to be talking about it, and it's got the surefire potential to be a massive cult hit if it doesn't light the box office on fire. Every couple of years, there's always THE keystone genre movie that gets everyone talking and excited. Most times, you get a mediocre movie with pretensions of greatness like Donnie Darko. Once in a while, though, you get something like The Cabin in the Woods, and man, is it worth it. Do not miss it. Geoff Henao: If you're familiar with Flixist, you'll know that I tend to stray away from horror films. Simply put, they're not my type of films. However, what Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard were able to accomplish with Cabin in the Woods just might have converted me, if only for the time being. The film was able to successfully and creatively twist and exploit the very characteristic tropes and cliches that make up the foundation of the horror genre, and portray them in a way that could potentially change the way horror films are made. That might be hyperbolic, but if Cabin in the Woods clicks with the right people, it could very well be the beginning of a new wave of horror films. 87 - Exceptional. Allistair Pinsof: Cabin in the Woods isn't the movie you may expect it to be. It also doesn't end up being the movie that the opening 15 minutes hints at. It's rare that a movie continuously plays against expectations in this day and age, but writers Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard manage to pull this off through spirited, bold writing. Behind the deconstruction of horror tropes, the two touch upon truly heavy material that asks us to question the nature of our enjoyment of horror and the cost of ending human suffering. The film is also full of moments of genuine tension, horrific spectacle, and attempts at humor so twisted and bizarre that you can't help but laugh. However, with this ambition and wide scope in storytelling, atmosphere is sacrificed. In this sense, Cabin in the Woods falls short of being a truly great horror film. It's one hell of a post-horror film, though! - 84 - Great Hubert Vigilla: There was a study last year that said spoilers don't necessarily ruin the enjoyment of a story. While that's true in some cases, The Cabin in the Woods serves as a strong rebuke. Don't get me wrong: the film would still be enjoyable if I knew what was going to happen, but there's a thrill to being surprised and having your expectations subverted (and occasionally confirmed). Not only is The Cabin in the Woods a celebration and enrichment of horror movie ideas, it makes the case that surprises can be valid aesthetic experiences; that surprise may even be an essential part of how we experience art. There's such an anarchic creativity to what Goddard and Whedon have achieved, and it goes far beyond previous horror-deconstruction movies. Too often those films feel like mere sightseeing -- they're too detached, the posturing is too cool. By comparison, The Cabin in the Woods is like watching two insane kid geniuses locked in a giant toy store and simply told, "Go." 88 - Exceptional Andres Bolivar: What Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard accomplished is something I never thought could be successfully achieved. With The Cabin in the Woods, we have a genuinely smart film that delivers laughs, frights and a buttf*ck of a twist(s). Most importantly, Goddard and Whedon have crafted this brilliant homage to the horror tropes we all know and love and executed in a manner that doesn't beat you over the head with it or comes off as the writer masturbating over how smart he is and "finishing" all over final draft. It is an epic deranged film that is insane and completely unapologetic. It's the film Scream wished it was and what Evil Dead would've been if it had a budget. I cannot stress how important The Cabin in the Woods is to the horror genre, much less cinema in general. 95 - Ultimate

[This review was originally published as part of our coverage of SXSW 2012. It has been reposted to coincide with the film's national release.] There is so much amazing stuff going on in Drew Goddard and Joss Whedon's The Cab...


I remember the first time I saw Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. I also remember the second time. And the third, fourth, and the fifth time (the latter of which is when I finally saw Commentary: The Musical, which continues to...

Trailer: The Avengers

Mar 15 // Xander Markham

The Japanese trailer for The Avengers is brimming with new footage, including a shot of Gwyneth Paltrow's Pepper Potts looking deeply concerned (maybe someone finally told her how embarrassing Goop is), a hovership a lot lik...

Cabin in the Woods director Drew Goddard turned down 3D

Mar 12 // Allistair Pinsof
"There was just this period in Hollywood where everyone wanted 3D. I don’t think they understood what 3D was," Goddard said. "They just saw Avatar made a lot of money and assumed it was because it was in 3D."With audiences complaining about poor 3D (see: Thor), Whedon and Goddard made the right choice in not pursuing a gimmick that would only muddy an already dimly lit film."On a lot of films they said, 'Can we make this 3D? Well, let’s just make it 3D!'" Goddard said. "Luckily, we were able to weather that storm and cooler heads prevailed. "We decided to bankrupt MGM and lay low for a while," Whedon replied swiftly with a smirk. "Sorry about delaying The Hobbit!"

We've been ranting and raving (well, just Alex so far) about Cabin in the Woods. According to Alex it's the best horror film in years and everyone must see it. But why isn't it the best horror film in years that everyone must...


Trailer: The Cabin in the Woods

Mar 06
// Alex Katz
This new trailer for Drew Godard and Joss Whedon's The Cabin in the Woods shows a tiny bit more of the film's first act twist (you should avoid this trailer if you want to go in cold on this one) and not a whole lot els...

The Avengers won't showcase 3D/be "obnoxious" about it

Dec 23
// Alec Kubas-Meyer
Joss Whedon has come out to defend the use of 3D in the upcoming Avengers flick. In an interview with Joblo, he said: "There's no, 'Oh look, we're going to spend 20 minutes going through this tunnel because it's in 3D!' And ...

HOLY GOD AM I EXCITED FOR THIS. The Cabin in the Woods has been floating around Hollywood for about two years now, having not found a distributor until recently. I had the pleasure of reading the script when it leaked b...


Teaser poster for Cabin in the Woods teases brilliantly

Dec 01
// Jamie R Stone
Perhaps one of the most done-to-death subgenres of Horror, the "cabin in the woods" archetypal film usually employs a "killer on the loose" or "a crazy ghost bent on wreaking havoc on the living." At first, Cabin in the Woods...

Whedon's failed Wonder Woman movie sounds crappy

Nov 08
// Alex Katz
I'd imagine you comics fans out there, like me, consider Joss Whedon's failed Wonder Woman movie as one of the great misses in comic book cinema history. In an interview with Rookie Magazine, Whedon opened up, for the first t...

Joss Whedon prepping metaphysical romance 'In Your Eyes'

Oct 31
// Xander Markham
Fresh off The Avengers and an adaptation of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, Joss Whedon has lined up a 'metaphysical love story', entitled In Your Eyes, for release under the banner of his recently formed Bellweather Pi...

Joss Whedon secretly shot a Shakespeare adaptation

Oct 24
// Alex Katz
[UPDATE: Joss Whedon confirmed to THR that this is an adaptation of Shakespeare's Much Ado about Nothing, and that it was shot in twelve(!) days in Santa Monica, CA. Whedon described the project: "The text is to me a deconstr...

Well, Comic Con is over, but there's still lots of goodies to go around, such as these glory shots of The Avengers team in all their, um, glory... You may have seen a few of these around the web, such as Captain America and I...


Lionsgate slates The Cabin in the Woods for Spring 2012

Jul 21
// Liz Rugg
This is one of those projects that seems like it's been in production limbo forever. The Cabin in the Woods was originally scheduled for a 2009 release, but then that got pushed back to 2010, then 2011, and now it's officiall...

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