5.5/10
286
9 user 7 critic

A Problem with Fear (2003)

A young man in Calgary, Alberta is multiphobic: nonetheless, he believes that he is the cause of the fear which is killing people around him.

Director:

Reviews

Comic-Con 2017: All Aboard the IMDboat

 | 

July 20 to 23, 2017

Get entertainment news, trailer drops, and photos with IMDb's coverage of 2017 San Diego Comic-Con featuring host and IMDboat captain Kevin Smith, including Saturday's live event.

Browse Our Guide to Comic-Con

2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Ryan, a good-natured slacker, is tempted into a money laundering scheme while working for a lottery magazine. A capitalistic comedy that asks the question - when is "enough" enough?

Director: Paul Fox
Stars: Paulo Costanzo, Steph Song, JR Bourne
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Several innocent bystanders are injured or killed when two robbers, fleeing from the police, run into the neighborhood cafe.

Director: Jerry Ciccoritti
Stars: Catherine O'Hara, Joe Pantoliano, Sarah Polley
Waydowntown (2000)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A group of young employees bet a month's salary, winner takes all, on who can last the longest without going outside.

Director: Gary Burns
Stars: Fab Filippo, Don McKellar, Marya Delver
Posers (2003)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  

Four Hardcore party posers are suddenly facing an unknown killer when one of them disappears.

Director: Katie Tallo
Stars: Jessica Paré, Sarain Boylan, Stefanie von Pfetten
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Adam Murphy - a real-estate hotshot and confirmed bachelor - feels the burn of failed love(s), when a social disease takes him face-to-face with a handful of one-night stands, revealing the shortcomings of his own image.

Director: Jason James
Stars: Paulo Costanzo, Ingrid Haas, Tyler Labine
Short | Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

After an accident Herman learns that he suffers from the rare Kahnawake syndrome, which causes him that the emotion "fear" falls out whereby he is forced to try out all phobias to become normal again.

Director: Michael Binz
Stars: Gustav-Peter Wöhler, Anke Engelke, Hans Martin Stier
Scorched I (2003)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Three mischievous employees of a bank in a small deserted town all make plans to rob at the same time, however none of them knows about the others. Meanwhile, a clothing store employee has ... See full summary »

Director: Gavin Grazer
Stars: Alicia Silverstone, Rachael Leigh Cook, Woody Harrelson
Twist (2003)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A queer "Oliver Twist" update set in the hustler district of modern-day Toronto.

Director: Jacob Tierney
Stars: Nick Stahl, Gary Farmer, Stephen McHattie
Kitchen Party (1997)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A group of teenagers come together to indulge in that great Canadian pastime, the house-party, and find themselves literally confined to the kitchen trapped by an extraordinary well ... See full summary »

Director: Gary Burns
Stars: Scott Speedman, Tygh Runyan, John Payne
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Three sets of Canadian slackers enjoy a series of comic misadventures as they each make their way across town.

Director: Gary Burns
Stars: Joel McNichol, Stephen Spender, Stewart Burdett
Blood (2004)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

After not having seen each other in five years, Chris Terry goes to visit his younger sister Noelle Terry in Montréal. Their lives, both together and apart, have been turbulent ones with ... See full summary »

Director: Jerry Ciccoritti
Stars: Emily Hampshire, Jacob Tierney
Snow Cake (2006)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A drama focused on the friendship between a high-functioning autistic woman and a man who is traumatized after a fatal car accident.

Director: Marc Evans
Stars: Alan Rickman, Sigourney Weaver, Carrie-Anne Moss
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
Dot
...
...
Alan (as Benjamin Ratner)
...
Vicky
...
Tina
James McBurney ...
Bill
...
Erin
...
Daphne
Donna Brunsdale ...
Wanda
...
Jerry
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Gregory D. Alvas ...
Stylish Young Man
...
Business Man
Rita Bozi ...
P.A. Announcer
...
Businessman #1
Edit

Storyline

A young man in Calgary, Alberta is multiphobic: nonetheless, he believes that he is the cause of the fear which is killing people around him.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Fantasy

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 April 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fobia  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Goofs

Many scenes were set in subway stations. Calgary does not have a subway system. The city's light rail system is mainly above ground, as are all 36 stations. See more »


Soundtracks

Walking Lizard
Written by Mouserocket
Performers include Alicja Trout, Robby Grant, and T-Mo
Heard in shopping mall scene
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Problem with Fear on Reel 13
14 November 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I had high hopes for A PROBLEM WITH FEAR as it began started to roll last week on Reel 13 (I know, I know, I'm getting behind on the blogs – I have more of a life now…). The film, yet another Canadian entry, looks really strong with an evocative, crisp color palette. It seemed like it was going to be a suspenseful, Hitchcockian thriller. It didn't take long, however, for me to realize that my expectations were not going to be filled. A Problem with Fear turned out to be mocking Hitchcock films (as opposed to lampooning them the way Mel Brooks did in HIGH ANXIETY) and was instead a twisted comedy that unfortunately, wasn't even very funny.

The film should really be called "A Problem with Tone". Bizarre choices are made throughout the piece, all of which seem to adversely affect the tonality issue. I have no doubt, at this point, that the film wanted to be a comedy, but it certainly took itself awfully seriously at times. In a way, the richness of the imagery and the strength of the production design belied the ostensibly intentional silliness of the narrative. Additionally, director Gary Burns overused a fog filter-type device that he placed over each side of the frame to give a feeling of disorientation. Instead, it detracts from the comedy element and it's not interesting enough to be effective from a dramatic point of view. It's more of a nuisance than anything else.

Speaking of nuisances, another weird aspect to the film was the characterization of the girlfriend, Dot. I'll admit that Emily Hampshire impressed me with her ability to create a complete, believable, three-dimensional character, but somewhere along the line, someone might have realized that the character's annoying qualities would get to be, well, annoying. She made the interesting choices of giving the character – the leading lady – a lisp, braces, an oddball sense of fashion and a bad, selfish attitude. Unusual, out-of-the-box thinking? For sure. Serving the betterment of the film? Not so much. Meanwhile, the gorgeous female of the film (Camille Sullivan, who's also quite good) actually turns out to be the older sister of the hunky leading man (Paolo Costanzo) and it seems that she, apparently in her late 20's, runs a huge corporation that is responsible for everyone's fears coming true. If that sounds ridiculous, that's because it is.

The film's supporters would probably suggest that I missed the point of the film, but the social commentary about the commercialization of fear was not lost on me. I just don't think that justifies the consistently poor choices made throughout the film. Just because a film has a message, in whatever style it chooses to deliver that message, doesn't mean the film is any good. And A PROBLEM WITH FEAR just isn't.

(For more information on this or any other Reel 13 film, check out their website at www.reel13.org)


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?