Just got out of the theater from seeing this one. My first impression: that was stupid. As an exercise in two filmmakers pulling out horror movie clichés and then pointing out how they're totally clichés, it's quite successful. As a satisfying film in its own right...not so much.
The biggest problem with it is, for a film that spends all its time asking the audience to think about the illogic of most horror films, it sure had a ton of holes itself. For example:
- How the heck did the Jock, the Fool and the Nerd survive their respective initial encounters? They each got stabbed/attacked with a bear trap and spewed blood everywhere! Yet instead of dying from shock and blood loss, they shake it off and continue to function just fine. What? How? Mr. Jock even used his upper body strength to pull wood apart mere minutes after being stabbed through the right shoulder.
- Ditto the Virgin, who not only survived drowning, being clamped with the bear trap, and tossed around and beaten bloody for five or so minutes, but makes it to the end of the film where she's torn into by a werewolf...and is conscious and functional literally one minute later within the same scene so she can casually smoke a joint while the world ends. Bull. Shit. There's suspension of disbelief and then there's not giving a fuck.
- So. Why are these elaborate sacrifice scenarios necessary? Oh, old Gods, eh? They demand it, or something. Okay. Well, I guess that means that if the victims ever found out it was all a setup that the whole thing would be null and void, huh, 'cause they have to choose to die. Wait, no? Really? Two of them do do find out? And you guys can just shoot them in the head in a elevator and it still counts? That...doesn't make any sense. Oh, and the Jock died outside the parameters of the cabin scenario, in a way that revealed the ruse to the survivors, and it still counted, too. So why not gather the five, take them underground and shoot them there in the bloody first place? The fool even asks basically this question at the end, and the Director doesn't really have an answer.
- And speaking of the Fool, whose blood was that that filled his receptacle after he got "killed?" Because he survived. Sure, he got stabled in the back and the tech guy threw a lever that drained his blood, but it must have been a flesh wound, I guess. Because he was fine. After being impaled by a zombie.
- No, seriously. Where did that blood come from?
- How did all the monsters held inside the facility get there? Once they escape, they're completely unmanageable and all our modern technology is helpless to stop them. Who captured them and how? Why weren't there any countermeasures in place that could actually work? (This isn't a problem with the film per se, but it is an interesting question, and I couldn't help but ask it while the movie was still playing.)
Dark Gilligan wrote:
Now see, I didn't find it clever at all. It was one Whedon trope after another, beginning to end, as if he was winking at us every time another one popped up. No spoilers, but anyone even remotely familiar with Whedon's body of work will know what I mean. After the closing credits my wife turned to me and said "I feel like we just watched a bad mash-up of Buffy
Indeed. It reminded me of why I hate most of Whedon's work (outside of Dr. Horrible, for whatever reason): it thinks it's far more clever than it actually is. Plus the Nerd's death was a straight-up copy of Wash's from Serenity
, down to the shape of the sickle that punched through his head.
So, yeah. I thought it kinda sucked.