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Fear, Anxiety & Depression (1989)

R | | Comedy | 8 December 1989 (USA)
Ira is a nervous playwright waiting and hoping to succeed with his art, which he takes it very seriously. But following his dreams and ambitions isn't something easy to do, specially when ... See full summary »


Todd Solondz


Todd Solondz




Credited cast:
Todd Solondz ... Ira Ellis
Max Cantor Max Cantor ... Jack
Alexandra Gersten ... Janice
Jane Hamper Jane Hamper ... Junk
Stanley Tucci ... Donny
Jill Wisoff ... Sharon
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
J.J. Barry ... Sam
August Costa August Costa ... Eric
Anne De Salvo ... Sylvia
John Ellison John Ellison
Kathleen Gati
Dhonna Harris Goodale ... Depressed Subway Rider
Alison Gordy Alison Gordy ... Kim
Eric Gutierrez ... Son, Play #1
Cathy Haase ... Resturant manager


Ira is a nervous playwright waiting and hoping to succeed with his art, which he takes it very seriously. But following his dreams and ambitions isn't something easy to do, specially when he has to consider the points of view his family, his artist friends and his girlfriend will provide to him whenever he exposes his incomprehensible works of art. Written by Rodrigo Amaro

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis





Did You Know?


First feature film directed by Todd Solondz. See more »


Junk: I don't *do* junk... I *am* Junk.
See more »


References Action Jackson (1988) See more »


A Neat Kind Of Guy
Music by Mark Klingman
Lyrics by Todd Solondz
Produced and Arranged by Mark Klingman
See more »

User Reviews

Off-Beat is Good
1 November 1998 | by Mae_WillSee all my reviews

I presume the schlockiness is intentional. It is very well-executed schlockiness. The archetypes are conventionally but very truthfully drawn: clinging desperate girlfriend, dangerous girlfriend, "best friend's girl" girlfriend, the commercially successful classmate from your old high school, the using "best friend".

The style of the movie is bizarre. The New York pictures are well-chosen for the flavor of the movie. The music often clashes with the action or the visual dynamic in a way that seems deliberate. It doesn't result in the Knowing Guffaw, or the Delighted Titter, but it just seems to lay the scene out stiff, like the way you feel when you're out for dinner with your parents at a place you now know is beneath you and your aspirations (a scenario which recurs at comforting intervals during the picture) -- this is a fine depiction of "spinning your wheels" during your inept and misguided 20s. I don't know a lot about this writer/director and his work (I live in a cinematically-challenged area) but if he meant it the way it came out, he's really reaching me.

There are "musical interludes" so artfully awkward. The "Ay-yi-yi-ra" song is a special treat. The movie is cloyingly awkward, but the result is so off-beat, so "am I really seeing this?" that I couldn't stop watching. I would really like everyone I know to see the "performance artist girlfriend" 'cause I'm amazed at her make-up technique, and her hair-doos.

Too bad the credits for this movie on this site are so sparse.

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Release Date:

8 December 1989 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,212, 10 December 1989

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



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