In the horrific kaleidoscope that is the horror genre one can’t deny the films that brought worldwide acclaim to certain directors. For one franchise it has done it for two. Cabin Fever originally graced our presence in the year of 2002 and introduced most of us to a skinny dark haired kid named Eli Roth. Seven years later one of Roth’s friends Ti West gave us the gore filled sequel Cabin Fever 2 Spring Fever. While the first was an instant hit, the latter became a fan favorite and a film people are begging for a director’s cut to this day. So now five years later we return to the land of the flesh eating virus to give a semi glimpse of how it could have all started with Cabin Fever: Patient Zero or Cabin Fever 3.
Helming the director duties for this film is Altitude and ABC’s Of Death filmmaker Kaare Andrews. Taking on such an acclaimed horror franchise is no easy task but unlike most viewers so far we believe he brought justice to the beloved film series. If you don’t think sequels are difficult to make then you aren’t watching horror films as no other genre can lay claim to as many. In Cabin Fever 3 we find a group of kids on one last hurrah before a friend gets married, and they unfortunately visit an island that carries the dreaded virus.
Check off the list of what you are looking for in horror and it’s here. Be cautioned that the story is simple and to the point so lower the expectations on some new light brought to the series. It’s just a gore filled romp and that serves us just fine. One of the attributes we enjoyed in the film is it continues the humorous tone that seems to be a staple in all the Cabin Fever films. To not have that would cause some disbelief that this film should be looked in the same light as the other two. Be that as it may there is a reason to believe that Patient Zero is just as good or even better as Spring Fever. While the Ti West purest may not agree with that, upon viewing the film you will see that it’s just another bloody good damn time.
The cast of Currie Graham, Jillian Murray, Brando Eaton, and Mitch Ryan provides the usual suspects we tend to see in these films. Outside of some weird school officials and locals one of the things that sets three apart is the role of Porter by Sean Astin. He holds the key to everything that is the virus and he gives a performance you would expect from such a veteran. It was nice to see him return to horror films as he truly is an iconic figure amongst genre fans.
Plain and simple Cabin Fever Patient Zero is an entertaining horror flick with tons of gore and mutilated flesh. It doesn’t leave much up to the imagination and it’s fine. Similar to most films that came out in the early 2000’s renaissance of gore, (Detour, Wrong Turn) this is a sequel that is not trying to be anything more than it already is. It’s a horror fans horror movie. Something that you can just sit back, relax and enjoy. It has the ability to be watched multiple times but nothing groundbreaking or new to the series. It could lead on to a compelling part four if they are able to bring the virus back to home in the first setting we saw it in. We don’t think they are quite finished with the Cabin Fever franchise and hopefully for us they don’t think its ready to be over as well.
Cabin Fever is now available on most VOD outlets. It will be in theaters and iTunes on August 1st. It is directed by Kaare Andrews and stars Ryan Donowho, Brando Eaton, Jillian Murray, Mitch Ryan, Lydia Hearst, Currie Graham, and Sean Astin. It is being released courtesy of RlJ/Image Entertainment.