Rabbit Fever: A British 2006 Mockumentary

Rabbit Fever, a British mockumentary was released in 2006. For those unfamiliar with "the Rabbit" in the film, it is the world's best-selling vibrator. Millions had been sold all over the globe. Supposedly, "Rabbit Fever" was the first film to follow the trials and tribulations of a group of Rabbit Addicts as they attempted to kick their Rabbit habit.
This was the film's official website.
Content is from the site's 2006 archived pages and other outside sources.

Can you feel the buzz?


Rabbit Fever trailer - adult content

Release date: Friday September 22, 2006

Cast and crew

Director: Ian Denyer
Screenwriter: Stephen Raphael
Lisa Barbusica
Julian Rhind-Tutt
Tara Summers
Flora Montgomery
Emma Buckley

Rabbit Fever (2006)
** Reviewed by Stella Papamichael / http://www.bbc.co.uk/
Updated 17 September 2006

A trend in British mockumentary continues with Rabbit Fever by first-time filmmaker Ian Denyer. Unfortunately, where recent attempts like Confetti and Festival manage to dredge a few laughs from a dustbin of half-baked ideas, this meditation on female masturbation scrapes the bottom of the can and fails to produce even one remotely funny moment. Close-ups of candy-coloured dildos between shots of women running to the loo sum up the breadth of writer Stephen Raphael's imagination. His efforts are embarrassingly inadequate.

Emma Buckley is among a group of "Rabbit addicts" enrolled in a recovery programme, but the real tragedy for these women is that they're upstaged by vibrating plastic. Raphael's script reduces them to props in a series of unfunny incidents building to the punchline that women "can't get enough". He throws in a few threads of relationship drama to dress up the skeletal frame, but it all feels so perfunctory - like rushing the foreplay to get to the pay-off.


Between the achingly obvious skits depicting late-night battery shopping etc the film is mostly talking heads. Professors and politicians debate the spread of "Rabbit Fever" with absolutely no comedic upshot. Tom Conti, feminist Germaine Greer and Virgin honcho Richard Branson are among a randomly cobbled collection of speakers who try very hard to be understatedly funny and come across as stiff as the titular joystick. And just when you thought it couldn't get more depressing, there's the spectacle of a 60-plus Stefanie Powers with her legs splayed. Evidently the pursuit of pleasure often results in toe-curling pain.

Rabbit Fever is released in UK cinemas on Friday 22nd September 2006.


"When I first saw this title, I just assumed it was about my country's rabbit problem. I'm Australian and everyone here knows about some things that no one else even heard of. One is rabbit fever, and the other is online pokies in Australia, since that's the search that gets you to the best pokies on the web. You see pokies is our name for slots. And for us, rabbits is our name for trouble and it seems like a fever." Carla Jones


Rabbit Fever

********/ 10 Philip French / Sun 24 Sep 2006 ? www.theguardian.com/

(90 mins, 18)
Directed by Ian Denyer; starring Lisa Barbuscia, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Tara Summers

Directed by Ian Denyer from a script by Stephen Raphael, Rabbit Fever is a mirthless, pointless mockumentary about vibrators and women who become addicted to their use. Is it satirising frank Channel 4 documentaries, the cult of the female orgasm, the obsession with recreational sex, the overly frank way people now discuss intimate matters?

It fails in every respect, and no doubt the well known people who appear in it as themselves or variations of themselves will come to regret it and will perhaps get together as a support group. They include Germaine Greer, William Boyd, Danny Baker, Emily Mortimer, George Walden, Toby Young, Frederic Raphael and the chairman of the Film Section of the Critics' Circle.



A British film that finally lives up to its hype

20 September 2006 | by mehbarton /  www.imdb.com
It's very rare that a British film lives up to its billing or promise. How many times have we felt betrayed by the monikers "Best British Film of the Year" or "Funniest British Film of 2006". The answer? Countless times. It's more often than not a deflating experience watching British films, especially comedies. Well, feel betrayed no longer. It's time to reflate yourselves because finally we have a film that delivers what it says on the packet. This is a wonderfully conceived low-budget British comedy that takes a simple premise - are vibrators destructive to society? - and runs with it in a delightfully silly mockumentary style. Throw into the mixer the inventive and hilarious use of cameos from the likes of Tom Conti, Stephanie Powers, Tom Hollander, Germaine Greer, Richard Branson & William Boyd (to name but a few)- some "playing" themselves, others playing parts in the film - and you have a fresh, vibrant, colourful, unconventional & fast-paced film that leaves you laughing throughout and feeling good at the end. Isn't that what British comedies are supposed to be about?

Rabit Fever

Posted: Tuesday September 19 2006 / By: Anna Smith / www.timeout.com/

This far-fetched British mockumentary strikes an uneasy balance between reality and fantasy as it follows a group of women who have become addicted to the ‘rabbit’ vibrator. While a real-life best-seller, the female-friendly sex toy is hardly believable as the cause of widespread international panic, but in ‘Rabbit Fever’ it causes marriages to break up, airlines to introduce bans and campaigners to protest for ‘rabbit’ breaks at work. It sounds like an unusually bad ‘Brass Eye’ sketch, but it’s far worse than that: a collection of repetitive am-dram talking heads, weak jokes and central characters who are hard to distinguish from one another. Julian Rhind-Tutt and Tara Summers offer occasional respite as a rabbit-plagued couple whose denial is revealed with relative subtlety: elsewhere the humour is unsophisticated and unfunny. The only people wincing more than the audience are likely to be participants such as Germaine Greer, who will surely see the finished product as an utterly wasted opportunity to explore female sexual liberation through humour.


An Aside: My friends and I have a twisted sense of pleasure when it comes to watching terrible movies. Once a month we make a point of renting movies that have terrible reviews.When Rabbit Fever was released we took notice and waited till it was available on DVD. We try not spending money on movie tickets for terrible movies if we can help it. We we were all settled in one evening with a couple of bottles of wine, sandwiches, cheese, crackers, and sweet goodies ready to watch Rabbit Fever when my two cats and dog thought it was the perfect time to play "chase me". The result was chaos in my living room as the three went scrabbling around and over the food table, underneathe chairs and through friends' legs. Their mad chase was both hilarious and a disaster as one of the full, uncorked bottles of red wine went toppling off the side table and onto my antique oriental rug splashing its contents everywhere. The humans scrambled to contain the spill, but I knew I would need professional help. Fortunately one of my friends had had a similiar disaster and knew the perfect company that does carpet cleaning for NYC homes. I called My Home Carpet & Upholstery Care NYC the first thing the next morning. By that afternoon I had one of the principals of the company drop by, access the problem and give me an estimate. All this was free! I really liked the fact that they offered organic carpet cleaning considering I had animals and I was allergic to a number of cleaning products. I went with the suggestion of getting the carpet Scotch Guarded after it was cleaned. Two weeks later the carpet arrived, looking great with no sign of the red wine. Amazing.

After soaking up as much of the spilled wine as we could, the movie viewing evening proceeded without further incident. The general opinion of Rabbit Fever by my friends was that it rated a 10 in loud groans. Our highest rating for really bad films. Whereas My Home Carpet & Upholstery Care NYC gets a 10 for excellence in carpet cleaning. I think the professional reviews of Rabbit Fever pretty much say it all. Watch the movie at your peril.


A smutty one-joke movie, and even the one joke isn’t funny.

* / 10 Reviewed by Chris Tookey / www.movie-film-review.com/

Rabbit Fever is, by virtue of its inept writing and lousy direction, one of the worst films ever made. It is based on a single, smutty idea: that a vibrating female sex-aid called a rabbit (which, I gather, really exists) is taking over the world, replacing men in women’s beds and becoming an addiction more dangerous than crack cocaine.

The film takes the form of a mock-documentary, with “experts” - among them, inexplicably, William Boyd and Germaine Greer – pontificating in a would-be humorous fashion about the phenomenon. Interspersed with the talking heads are “real-life” case studies, broadly performed as though they are intended to be comic by actors whose identity I shall not reveal for the sake of their loved ones.

The man who penned this sniggering smut is Stephen Raphael, who has a distinguished writer as his father (Frederic Raphael, who briefly appears as a Hollywood film producer). Unfortunately, Raphael Junior appears not to have inherited a single creative gene. He is aged 39. Let us hope and pray he finds some alternative source of employment.

The clod-hopping, ham-fisted direction is by one Ian Denyer, whose previous work for television includes Inside The Mind of Paul Gascoigne, so he is obviously up for a challenge. Sadly, this one is completely beyond him.

Normally, I would dismiss dross of this utter uselessness in a single paragraph, or ignore it out of kindness. However, it’s been given rave reviews on its poster by Henry Fitzherbert of the Sunday Express as “**** Uproarious fun”, and Toby Young (pictured) in The Tatler as “British comedy of the year”. So be warned that both Fitzherbert and Young appear in the movie. Their “opinions” are not to be trusted.

Of the few critics who attended the press screening, more than a quarter walked out within the first half-hour. Those of us who remained emerged shaking our heads and asking each other how on earth this shambles ever got made. It is even harder to know who would possibly release it, except as a bet.