Down 1,461 this week

Modern Problems (1981)

PG  |   |  Comedy, Fantasy, Sci-Fi  |  25 December 1981 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 4.9/10 from 3,733 users  
Reviews: 46 user | 14 critic

Jealous, harried air traffic controller Max Fiedler, recently dumped by his girlfriend, comes into contact with nuclear waste and is granted the power of telekinesis, which he uses not only to win her back, but to gain a little revenge.


Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Video


The 25 Most Immersive Worlds in Cinema

Highly immersive cinematic worlds can carry a movie, and we've rounded up the best of the best.

See the full list

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 48 titles
created 07 Dec 2011
a list of 26 titles
created 11 Apr 2014
a list of 26 titles
created 14 Apr 2014
a list of 49 titles
created 11 months ago
a list of 26 titles
created 2 months ago

Related Items

Search for "Modern Problems" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Modern Problems (1981)

Modern Problems (1981) on IMDb 4.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Modern Problems.



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A visiting dignitary, a CIA agent, a Nazi spy, Japanese tourists, an assassin and a group of "midget" actors from The Wizard of Oz (1939) all check into an elite Los Angeles hotel called Under the Rainbow.

Director: Steve Rash
Stars: Chevy Chase, Carrie Fisher, Eve Arden
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Wrongfully turned into a fugitive, a writer seeks the help of his ex-wife, who is now married to an attorney.

Director: Jay Sandrich
Stars: Goldie Hawn, Chevy Chase, Charles Grodin
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  

A small time arms dealer in South America to sell weapons to the revolutionaries, winds up negotiating the sale of an experimental plane to the nation's dictator.

Director: William Friedkin
Stars: Chevy Chase, Sigourney Weaver, Gregory Hines
Foul Play (1978)
Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A shy San Francisco librarian and a bumbling cop fall in love as they solve a crime involving albinos, dwarves, and the Catholic Church.

Director: Colin Higgins
Stars: Goldie Hawn, Chevy Chase, Burgess Meredith
Comedy | Crime | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Browning is a PI with a bad cold, who's sent to investigate a case by a mysterious client.He stumbles across the body of a young woman and is stabbed to death, and when he wakes up in ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Camp
Stars: Chevy Chase, Jane Seymour, Benjean
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

The escaped delinquent John W. Burns, Jr. replaces Dr. Maitlin on a radio show, saying he's the psychiatrist Lawrence Baird. His tactless radio show is a hit, and he becomes very popular. ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Ritchie
Stars: Dan Aykroyd, Walter Matthau, Charles Grodin
Funny Farm (1988)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

When Andy and Elizabeth buy a farm in Vermont, they can't imagine the trouble that awaits them. Andy has quit his job as a sports journalist and is planning to use the peace and quiet of ... See full summary »

Director: George Roy Hill
Stars: Chevy Chase, Madolyn Smith Osborne, Kevin O'Morrison
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A collection of skits that make fun of 1970s television, featuring early appearances by Chevy Chase and Richard Belzer.

Director: Ken Shapiro
Stars: Ken Shapiro, Richard Belzer, Chevy Chase
Fletch (1985)
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Irwing M. "Fletch" Fletcher is a newspaper reporter being offered a large sum to off a cancerous millionaire, but is on the run, risking his job, and finding clues when it's clear he's healthy.

Director: Michael Ritchie
Stars: Chevy Chase, Joe Don Baker, Dana Wheeler-Nicholson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A businessman finds he and his friends the prisoners of a sadistic judge and his equally odd family in the backwoods of a bizarre mansion.

Director: Dan Aykroyd
Stars: Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy
Fletch Lives (1989)
Comedy | Mystery | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Fletch is a reporter for a Los Angeles newspaper, but he acts more like a detective. When an obscure relative leaves him a Louisiana mansion in his will, Fletch is naturally curious. ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Ritchie
Stars: Chevy Chase, Hal Holbrook, Julianne Phillips
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

When police discover that a mob hitman has moved in next door to the Robbersons, they want to find out what he is up to. So they set up a stakeout in the Robbersons' home. Hard-nosed, ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Ritchie
Stars: Chevy Chase, Jack Palance, Dianne Wiest


Cast overview, first billed only:
Mitch Kreindel ...
Arthur Sellers ...
Mobile Supervisor
Neil Thompson ...
Controller #1
Controller #2
Ronald E. House ...
Vendor (as Ron House)
Buzzy Linhart ...
The Tile Man
Christine Nazareth ...


Air traffic controller Max Fiedler is unhappy with his career and his second marriage. An exposure to toxic waste gives him the power of telekinesis. He comes to a crossroads at a beachhouse he shares with his wife, his ex, and a voodoo priestess. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Chevy has the power to make this Holiday Season the funniest ever! See more »


Comedy | Fantasy | Sci-Fi


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

25 December 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Doido por Ela  »

Box Office


$8,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (FMC Library Print)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the opening scene what sounds like a children's program is playing on the TV in the background. It is actually a raunchy sketch called "Koko the Klown Show" from the movie The Groove Tube (1974), Chevy Chase's first movie which was also directed by Ken Shapiro, who played Koko, and directed Modern Problems (1981). See more »


At the beginning of the film in the Air Traffic Control Tower, the wall clock in the background changes time between shots. See more »


Max Fielder: I'm starting to see things move in thin air. Like this morning, I think I caused Darcy's coffee cup to slide across the table and crash. And then everything around was shaking and quaking...
Brian Stills: You trashed the place 'cause you're mad at this Daisy chick, right?
Max Fielder: No, no, Brian, I did it but I didn't touch anything.
Brian Stills: Look, we all think we got some monster inside us that's ready to explode any minute. You break things. I masturbate, so what? Same difference.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Alternate takes (without audio) are shown of the main characters during the end credits. See more »


Spoofs The Exorcist (1973) See more »


Gonna Get It Next Time
Performed by The Tubes
Arranged and produced by David Foster
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Lyrics by Adrienne Anderson
Music by Dominic Frontiere
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

11 March 2005 | by (The Penumbra) – See all my reviews

I never really got into this movie, it's more strange than it is funny. And Chevy wasn't his usual self either, he was way to morose and distant to really side with his character or empathise with him in any way.

Chevy plays Max Fielder, an air-traffic controller who's life is constantly in the toilet and bad luck follows him everywhere. He's very paranoid and possessive over his girlfriend, so much so that she dumps him for some total dork.

On his way home from a disastrous night out his car is sprayed with radioactive gunk from a leaky government truck. He is soon blessed/cursed with telekinetic abilities, which he uses to get revenge on those who make his life miserable.

It could have been really fun but it's just...weird. Ken Shapiro (who?) does not have the same edge in his direction as Harold Ramis, Michael Ritchie or John Landis and he doesn't know how to fully use Chevy's brand of humor. There are some laughs to be had though, but their not so memorable.

The DVD is in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen but it's mostly all shot in soft focus so there's nothing outstanding here. The sound is plain old Mono and it's alright if nothing else, though the dialogue has very heavy use of ADR. A trailer and TV spot are included. Oh...and that theme song playing over the menu, opening and closing credits? Yuck!

4 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Gay Bar scene sackler2001
dvd ? trog-7
What kind of car is Darcy driving? bdemoss
No: N - O - E hblood
brandenburg concertos mayanlongcount
Could have been...but bodie3
Discuss Modern Problems (1981) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: