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Lost (#110 of 68)

SXSW 2012: The Cabin in the Woods

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SXSW 2012: <em>The Cabin in the Woods</em>
SXSW 2012: <em>The Cabin in the Woods</em>

Horror cinema subversiveness need not preclude actual horror, a fact that’s unfortunately lost on The Cabin in the Woods, a brainchild of writer turned director Drew Goddard (Cloverfield, Lost) and co-writer Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) that sets aside actual scares for what’s-going-on suspense and diminishing-returns cleverness. Genre aficionados both, Goddard and Whedon are interested in playing with convention in slyly self-conscious ways throughout this collaboration, embracing clichés while reconfiguring them in ways that are both surprising and, more fundamentally, speak to the relationship between horror filmmaker and viewer. It’s a potentially exciting endeavor that reaps initially intriguing rewards, as the early sight of apparent government agents Steve (Richard Jenkins) and Richard (Bradley Whitford) discussing mundane everyday stuff while prepping for work in a steel subterranean facility immediately implies—especially thanks to the abrupt, jarring full-screen title credit that ends the scene—that the forthcoming material will be more than it initially appears. What that might be, however, remains shrouded in mystery once attention turns to college student Dana (Kristen Connolly), her suddenly blonde BFF Jules (Anna Hutchison), her studly boyfriend Curt (Chris Hemsworth), his nerdy-hunky friend Holden (Jesse William), and stoner Marty (Fran Kranz)—typical horndog types travelling out to Curt’s cousin’s remote cabin for a weekend of secluded drinking and sex.

Lost Recap Season 6, Episode 12, “Everybody Loves Hugo”

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Lost Recap: Season 6, Episode 12, “Everybody Loves Hugo”

ABC

Lost Recap: Season 6, Episode 12, “Everybody Loves Hugo”

This episode was worth my time, I’ll tell you what. Consistently hilarious, somewhat surprising, an all around good time with three beers in my belly. Things started out great with that goofy (but not quite goofy enough) video celebrating Hurley for his generosity, but things got kicked up a notch when he said he had an event the next night at “The Human Fund,” nodding at Constanza’s fake charity, and signaling just how “false” these sideline stories may in fact be. Or, perhaps, that this idea of charity, this vision of a more perfect universe, is in fact a lie. No surprise there, I suppose. But funny to think it’s a nod to the best sitcom ever that does this for us (for me!) here.

And that was just the beginning. That was before Ilana got blowed up, before Dark Locke threw Desmond down a well, before Desmond RAN OVER LOCKE WITH HIS CAR! Seems like we could go around these interwebs talking in all caps about Lost for the rest of its run. It holds that much promise—to spin wacky events and characters into one another—in my heart. Things just keep getting sillier, and funnier, and that’s never a bad thing on a show this convoluted and, by most lights, all too self-serious. So good for them for making fun of themselves so much this episode. (Also, Ben’s little reflection on what the island will do to them, the remaining principles, once its done with them, smacks of last week’s winks at the audience.)

Lost Recap Season 6, Episode 11, “Happily Ever After”

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Lost Recap: Season 6, Episode 11, “Happily Ever After”

ABC

Lost Recap: Season 6, Episode 11, “Happily Ever After”

Well, I suppose the last two episodes have raised the stakes some as we wind down the series, but I cannot quite stomach all the overt, to say wall-to-wall, sentimentality that drives a lot of these twists and turns. Or, as my friend Eric put it, Jeremy Davies is the last person you want playing sentimental. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the Desmond-Penny connection. But, good grief, give me more people in electric chairs, or chambers, or between two coils of light.

There was plenty of fun to be had in the 2004’ plot given its fits of stupidity and the literal plunge into a new future it takes midway through. It was great to have it framed as a way of seeing, too, with that damned Eloise Hawking-Widmore-Whatever (why can’t we get more Alexandra Krosney?) getting all haughty as usual and telling us, through Desmond, that we’re not ready to see why things are the way things are in this primed world because, well, there are more episodes to come. It’s kind of great just how much Cuse and Lindelof talk at the audience, but it’s equally forever infuriating. Nobody likes a tease unless things really cut loose later. And there’s millions of us hoping, some probably praying, that we get a great consummation in the end, a real happy ending.