Why are they handing out barf bags for this horror movie?

Handing out barf bags at your movie screening is a publicity trick right out of legendary film director William Castle's storied playbook, but in the case of “Bite” — a new “body horror” flick screening at this year's Fantasia Film Festival — the bags may have been warranted.

According to a report over at Bloody-Disgusting, at least one ambulance was called after two patrons experienced adverse reactions while watching the film. From festival co-director Mitch Davis:

“I leave the BITE premiere for all of ten minutes and the following text lights up my phone: '2 people,fainted. One girl is puking and another hit his head on stairs.' Truth.”

Written and directed by Chad Archibald, “Bite” centers on a young woman (Elma Begovic) who suffers from a strange bite during a bachelorette party getaway and begins to transform into an insect-like creature. Sounds not a little bit like David Cronenberg's famed 1986 version of “The Fly,” which itself featured some revolting effects work.

So is “Bite” really that extreme, or is this some kind of elaborate publicity stunt? A review by Film School Rejects critic Rob Hunter indicates that the film may well be gross enough to warrant that kind of reaction from weaker-stomached viewers:

“Pus, bile and other bodily fluids leak from her body, and Archibald ensures that we see the discharge happening in such detail that we can almost smell it as well. Viewers with weak gag reflexes have been warned.”

And from horror blog 28 Days Later Analysis:

“The contrasts between dark and light set the tone perfectly and the shots, particularly during the most gory scenes, are stunning. It's hard to shake that icky feeling after watching the copious amounts of puss and blood and mucus and goo-it's disgusting, and amazing!”

You have been warned. Watch the official trailer below.