Directed by Eli Roth, starring Rider Strong, Jordan Ladd, Joey Kern, Cerina Vincent and James DeBello.

If you go down to the woods today you're sure of a big surprise - but 'Cabin Fever' is no teddy bears' picnic. Director Eli Roth's feature film debut, it's a gory, gooey horror flick with several stomach-churning moments and the usual quota of nubiles falling victim to an unseen - and unavoidable - enemy.

Five college friends, ranging from mildly obnoxious to completely offensive, decide to celebrate the end of their studies by holidaying in a cottage hidden deep in the woods. Carelessly ignoring ominous warnings from the inbred-looking locals (and all the rules of horror films), it's not long before sick hermits, violence, buckets of blood and a flesh-eating virus interrupt their mountain idyll.As the teens start to fall sick, one by one, the limits of friendship are quickly reached and overtaken by paranoia and fear as Roth finds more and more disgusting ways of showing the onset of the virus. There's an icky masturbation scene and a disturbing incident, which will have resonance with females everywhere, as a girl shaves more than just the hair off her legs.

With nods to '28 Days Later', 'The Blair Witch Project', 'Deliverance' and any number of classic horrors, Roth keeps things moving at a fast pace but, although the body count mounts, 'Cabin Fever' is more sickening than scary. The characters are one-dimensional and dialogue inane, but brief moments of levity and a smart ending make this no-brainer horror just about watchable.

Caroline Hennessy