This weekend sees the release of Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard’s The Cabin in the Woods, the most anticipated and buzzed-about horror film in some time. The setup is indeed the same one you’ve experienced over and over: a group of partying, young-adult archetypes head to a remote getaway, only to find terrifying carnage. But the guys behind Cabin delve far deeper into the geek abyss than many viewers will expect, emerging with a gonzo, convoluted send-up that stirs the pot even as it flies off the rails (no spoilers here, kids). The titular locale is but a dilapidated entry point, and we’ve got 15 more shacks that have opened their doors for audiences through the years.
Antichrist (2009). Leave it to Lars von Trier to slap the name “Eden” on a fog-swathed, odious-looking torture chamber. In the provocateur’s brilliant upheaval of the biblical creation story, he sends grief-stricken Willem Dafoe and Charlotte Gainsbourg off to a secluded summer haunt, where the goal to lick their parental wounds is also turned on its head. There are quite a few indelible happenings in this Melancholia precursor, but the most disturbing, from an attic-set revelation to a much-ballyhooed female circumcision, take place at home base.