8.9/10
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4 user 1 critic

Rabbit Fever (2010)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 12 September 2012 (USA)
Trailer
2:11 | Trailer
You've heard of dog and horse shows, but are you familiar with the fascinating world of rabbit showing? For the first time ever, this 100-year-old society is revealed. Rabbit Fever follows ... See full summary »

Director:

Amy Do
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Cast

Credited cast:
Holly Anderson Holly Anderson ... Herself
Jenna Anderson Jenna Anderson ... Herself
Skylar Anderson Skylar Anderson ... Himself
Mike Avesing Mike Avesing ... Himself
Briony Barnes Briony Barnes ... Herself
Glen Carr Glen Carr ... Himself
Jeremy Collins Jeremy Collins ... Himself
Patti Courtney Patti Courtney ... Herself
Paula Courtney Paula Courtney ... Herself
Pat Duggan Pat Duggan ... Herself
Candace Frazee Candace Frazee ... Herself
Jeremy Garrett Jeremy Garrett ... Himself
Ann Haussener Ann Haussener ... Herself
Johnny Haussener Johnny Haussener ... Himself
Eli Kho Eli Kho ... Himself
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Storyline

You've heard of dog and horse shows, but are you familiar with the fascinating world of rabbit showing? For the first time ever, this 100-year-old society is revealed. Rabbit Fever follows a colorful collection of competitors as they strive to win the top title at the 2005 National American Rabbit Convention - an event that draws more than 20,000 rabbits in one building, the largest mass of rabbits in the world. While adult members of the rabbit habit compete for 'Best in Show', the teenage enthusiasts quest for an even more coveted honor in the rabbit community - Rabbit King and Queen. Written by Anonymous

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Taglines:

5 teenagers. 25,000 rabbits. One extraordinary competition. Who will win the national title of Rabbit King & Queen? See more »

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 September 2012 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hotpopcorn See more »
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Technical Specs

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Amy Do captured over 150 hours of footage, documenting the same rabbit enthusiasts at the American Rabbit Breeder's Association National Convention over the course of five years. See more »

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User Reviews

 
At last! A movie about us Rabbit People!
9 October 2013 | by bumperbunnySee all my reviews

Recently I finally got the opportunity to watch the movie Rabbit Fever. And you know what? I'm glad I did.

Created by Amy Do, Rabbit Fever is a full-length documentary about the rabbit showing hobby. It focuses on the ARBA Youth Royalty contest, following five young rabbit breeders in their quests to become the ARBA King or Queen. We've been hearing about the production of this movie for years, and now it's finally available via DVD and streaming at RabbitFever.com. Amy gave about ten years and most of the resources she had – including funds she had intended to put toward a house – to producing this film, and I'm glad to be able to thank her for that effort.

Like the "stars" in the movie, competing in ARBA Royalty Contests was the focus of my teenage years. In fact, the kids featured in the movie were my role models. They were in the age group just above me, and so were the very people that I held in high respect. Jeremy Garrett helped coach me in Royalty, and Jenna Anderson's mom answered some of my questions when I was studying.

So for a long time I didn't want to see this movie. Royalty contests were just too close to my heart. Since I never did win National Queen (though I was twice a runner-up), I was afraid that seeing this movie would arouse competitive feelings that I didn't want creeping back. I was afraid that the movie wouldn't depict the hobby accurately, that it would play up the Royalty contests to be different than they actually are, or caricature-ize rabbit breeders as total weirdos. But it doesn't. I can say with confidence that Rabbit Fever portrays the hobby exactly as it is, and overall in a very positive light. (In other words, if it does make rabbit breeders out to be total weirdos, then I am too much of one myself to notice!)

Amy did a great job capturing the spirit of rabbit royalty contests: so many young people putting so much time and effort into the project, when only a few come away with an award. She shows how some youth members have worked at it for most of their lives, and how they give up "normal" teenage activities to focus on their rabbit projects. She touches on both the hardcore "If I don't win I'll cry" competitiveness, and also the priceless friendships that youth members build with each other. These major themes are brought to life by the little details that are oh-so-accurate, like the total randomness of the judging callbacks, and how easy it is to blow the four-minute interview that makes or breaks your chance at the crown.

Honestly when the film was over, it felt more like I had flipped through one of my personal scrapbooks than that I had just watched a movie. Of course, it helped that I recognized a huge percentage of the people in it and even spotted myself in the background of one shot. (I remember Amy being at Convention filming, but I didn't know at the time that she was making a movie.) The film brought back the hold-your-breath jitters when the winners were being announced at the banquet. I identified with the girls on stage receiving their awards, and also with Lindsey Lauterbach looking into the happy banquet room once her royalty career was over and thinking, "this used to be me."

To me the film feels a little rushed, but there's so much to tell about the rabbit hobby, and an hour and twenty-three minutes is so little time. Cavies, team contests, and local shows were barely mentioned, and breed judging is covered only briefly. But when we consider how many facets this hobby has, it's easy to see how Amy shot over 150 hours of footage for this film.

I was really impressed at how family-friendly the film is. It's (virtually) free of bad language and any political slant, and features some super cute animations. My one minor complaint is that it implies that Joe Kim won convention BIS in 2005, when he actually won in 2003.

If you are an ARBA royalty hopeful, then watch this film. I strongly recommend it. It portrays the contests very accurately, and, since it allows you to see into the lives of other participants, helps put the whole thing in perspective. Two-time ARBA King Jeremy Collins nails it when he says in the film that the top contestants are all smart kids, and they've all done their studying, and so they have really similar scores when it comes down to the interview. Any one of them "deserves" to win – it's just a matter of who comes off well to the interview judges.

Like the movie says, even when you win, the fame and glory fades really fast: Long-time rabbit breeders see generation after generation of youth go by. It's terribly clichéd, but I'll say it again: the real prize these contests hold out to us is not a tiara, but the person you become while trying to achieve it. 4-H and ARBA Royalty contests really do build confident and capable youth members that will continue to succeed long after they turn 19.

Thanks for this movie, Amy Do. Nice Job.

And psst, Royalty contestants – listen closely to Paula Courtney in the film talking about what the judges are looking for in the Royalty interview. She is dead-on, and shares the most important interview tip I know.


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