Cabin Fever – USA, 2016 – overview and reviews

Cabin-Fever-2016-Poster

‘They’re all going to get it’

Cabin Fever is a 2016 American horror feature film and a remake of the 2002 movie of the same name. It was directed by Travis Zariwny [as Travis Z] (Intruder; The Midnight Man) from a screenplay by Randy Pearlstein and Eli Roth.

The co-writer and director of the original, Eli Roth (HostelThe Green Inferno; Knock Knock), executive produced alongside Evan Astrowsky, Christopher Lemole, and Tim Zajaros.

The film is unique in that it uses the same script as Roth’s original, although director Travis Zarinwy trimmed the page count from 134 to only 92. One notable change is that Deputy Winston, a male (portrayed by Giuseppe Andrews) in the first and second films, is now played by a female (portrayed by Louise Linton). Zarinwy claimed he made this choice because “There was no way for me to emulate Giuseppe’s performance.”

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The movie stars Gage Golightly (Teen Wolf; Exeter), Matthew Daddario, Samuel Davis (From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series), Dustin Ingram (Paranormal Activity 3), and Nadine Crocker (Deadgirl).

A flesh-eating virus makes a meal of five teens on spring break in a remote wood cabin…

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Reviews:

“Much of the scenario proceeds the same way as before, though, and the real difference is that it lacks not only the confrontational zest it had the first time around, but the uneasy tension as well. More than half the movie’s over before the first of the principals gets infected, and it feels longer…” Michael Gingold, Fangoria

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“In addition to its plot-generated shocks, the movie packs in so many gratuitous “Boo!” moments that you can set your watch by them … Who benefits from the existence of this film? Certainly not the largely bland ensemble of post-adolescent actors cast as the leads, who here can scarcely be called characters.” Glenn Kenny, The New York Times

“The young ensemble playing the victims, including the wonderfully named Gage Golightly, goes through their violent paces with admirable conviction. For some reason, director Zariwny takes a more serious approach, which removes whatever sick fun is inherent to the material.” Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter

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Buy Blu-ray: Amazon.com

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“Reviewing Cabin Fever (2016) is a pretty easy job. If you loved the original, then you’ll love the reshoot. If you hated the original, you’ll hate the reshoot. Period. On a side note, the special f/x were fun and gooey at!!” Scott Shoyer, Anything Horror

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” … the makers of this modern makeover have taken the laziest possible approach to their assignment and actually reused Roth’s screenplay. Scene for scene, line for line, gag for gag, it’s basically the same movie. And the original was no masterpiece to begin with.” A.A. Dowd, A.V. Club

“So what’s the most enthusiastic case Cabin Fever makes to justify a remake with no imagination? Social media inclusion, of course! Roth’s film OBVIOUSLY lacked shots of Karen uploading selfies to her Facebook, so it makes complete sense to remake the entire film with these 30-second inclusions! Sigh Seriously – that’s the biggest addition I can differentiate here.” Matt Donato, We Got This Covered

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Buy Blu-ray or DVD: Amazon.co.uk

“The leg-shaving scene, a memorable gross-out gag in the original, is awkwardly prolonged in the remake so as to pointlessly, unimaginatively ratchet up the gore. The revelation of the flesh-eating virus’s source, a queasy moment in Roth’s film, is reduced here to a generic action-movie beat; each scene segues artlessly and unexcitingly into another, as if Zariwny were checking off each item on his list of obligations to Roth.” Chuck Bowen, Slant

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Buy original: Amazon.co.uk

” … exactly the same as its predecessor, right down to the irritatingly contrived and purportedly humorous banter, cloying backwoods caricatures, and flesh-destroying illness spread by water (any similarities to Flint, Mich., are unintentional and best ignored). A better movie might conjure a disquieting atmosphere of dread as its clueless characters await their fates.” Geoff Berkshire, Variety

“Sadly, following many recent horror movie tropes, the film lacks atmosphere and charm (which were both plentiful in the 2002 version), and tries to make up for that with gore effects that aren’t much better than the ones from the first film. While we do get to see the beautiful woods and rivers, it feels like most of the color has been washed out, draining what little life remained in this sterile picture.” Luiz H.C., Bloody Disgusting

“It’s not a carbon copy of the original but the humor that made Eli Roth’s original enjoyable has been replaced with a total lack thereof. This redux attempts to be scary where its predecessor was silly but the effect is a film that always seems to be taking itself too seriously. And what’s worse, if you have seen the original, you always know exactly what is coming next. There are really no surprises.” Tyler Doupé, Wicked Horror

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Buy original: Amazon.com

Filming locations:

Portland, Oregon

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