Cabin Fever

Cabin Fever (2003)
Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Cast: Rider Strong, Jordan Ladd, James Debello, Cerina vincent, Joy Kern
Extras: Commentary Tracks, Featurette, Shorts, Trailer, and other gimmicks

A group of young people is driving to a remote cabin in the woods for some partying when all of a sudden they are haunted by unimaginable horrors in this independent low budget film. No, I am not talking about Sam Raimi’s seminal budget horror film ’The Evil Dead’ but instead of Eli Roth’s 2003 outing ’CabinFever.’ While there are striking similarities between the films, I do want to stress that ’Cabin Fever’ has its own legs to stand on and is not nearly as derivative as it may appear at first. The plot, the dramatic arch and the ’horrors’ are very different and create an identity of their own.

The image quality of the film on this DVD is generally good, but since this is a low budget movie, do not expect the quality of the Hollywood blockbuster. A bit of grain is evident in the film and shadow definition leaves a bit to be desired at times, creating murky blacks and shadows that sometimes do not read as well as they should. Color reproduction is good with vibrant hues, and flesh tones are faithfully rendered throughout. No edge enhancement disturbs the presentation and the compression is adequate for the material.

Audio on the DVD is good with a natural sounding frequency response throughout. The dynamic range is equally good, making for a powerful presentation with some great scares and explosive moments. Dialogues are well recorded and always remain audible and understandable in the mix. A whole slew of commentary tracks is also included covering virtually all aspects of the poduction in quite smoe detail.

Director Eli Roth personally oversaw the creation of the DVD and has added some very cool extras that should get fans excited. First up is the ’Family Version’ of the film. Introduced by Eli himself, this is a truly family friendly version of this horror classic, turning into a movie for all ages.

’Chick Vision’ on the other hand is a version that has been created specifically for the squeamish – blocking out all the frightening scenes in the film as if you were covering your eyes with your hands. Very funny, stuff, really!

The ’Rotten Fruit’ shorts are also included on the disc, animated claymation films created by director Eli Roth and Noah Belson. ’Under The Skin’ is a behind-the-scenes featurette showing in more detail how the film has been put together. ’Pancakes’ is another interesting little short film by the director that is well worth seeing. The DVD is rounded out by a series of interesting hidden features that you should also check out.

’Cabin Fever’ is a fun little movie that does have a lot to offer. It is frightening, intense and oftentimes right on the money when it comes to string audiences along. The story is very cool and the film’s execution, design and production definitely make this DVD a release horror aficionados should take notice of.