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Fear (1996)



Average Rating: 5.8/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 3

No consensus yet.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 60,205

My Rating

Movie Info

Mark Wahlberg stars in one of his first features as a hoodlum drug dealer from the wrong side of the trackswho falls in love with Nicole Walker, an upper-middle-class high school girl (Reese Witherspoon). In this psycho-drama (with the emphasis on psycho), Nicole happily loses her virginity to her first love, but, when she begins to doubt the relationship, his tenderness turns to violence, as he stalks and terrorizes her and her friends and family. The girl's father never trusted him in the


Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense

Christopher Crowe

Oct 27, 1998

Universal Pictures

Watch It Now


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All Critics (41) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (12) | Rotten (19) | DVD (3)

For a while, the cast is appealing enough, and the design is House Beautiful enough, to camouflage the Fatal flaws that turn the second half into an overblown, predictable snicker-fest.

January 1, 2000
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

One of the all-time goofiest movies, avoiding a tough inspection of troubling emotional speeds and stunted communication to sneeze out a confused, half-realized story of obsession.

February 18, 2013 Full Review Source:

A throwback to the psycho-sexual thrillers of the 1980s, Fear is sort of a male version of Fatal Attraction

July 18, 2011 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com

Violent creepy-boyfriend thriller without helpful takeaways.

February 17, 2011 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

Though cheesy and illogical, this thriller has charming performances, and an exciting climax.

July 16, 2007
Film Threat

Corny but cool...Wahlberg has presence

May 6, 2005
Film Threat

Wahlberg's creep-tastic slow-burn makes this predictable potboiler a little bit scary and a lot more entertaining.

April 3, 2005

The only thing scary about this film is watching Mark Wahlberg's career as an actor begin to dissipate.

November 22, 2002 | Comments (7)
Juicy Cerebellum

Audience Reviews for Fear

Good thriller, and the movie that introduced me to Reese Witherspoon. Still enjoy it many years later. How did I only just notice David has a Chucky doll in his room!
March 9, 2013

Super Reviewer

The decent right-side-of-the-tracks family unit is threatened by local not-so-right-side thug types in this thriller that borrows extensively from Peckinpah's "Straw Dogs" (1971). Wahlberg and Peterson do well as the tension mounts for the big winner-takes-all showdown but the final payoff's a trifle abrupt.
August 19, 2011

Super Reviewer

The first hour is nothing to get worked up about, which is why I can't give this a particularly high rating. But do not despair - the ending is sure worth the wait!

Reese Witherspoon's character Nicole can sometimes be downright painfully gullible and na´ve when it comes to all the crap David is shoving down her throat, but hey, let's be honest here: some teen girls really are.
July 22, 2011

Super Reviewer

Laura: What's the big deal?
Steve: The big deal, Laura, is that the guy gives me the creeps, and the girl is my daughter.

The only way to describe Fear is it's a not so thrilling thriller. It's unoriginal and really offers nothing but what you'd expect. Nicole(Reese Witherspoon) starts dating a seemingly nice guy, David(Mark Wahlberg). Soon her family and eventually her comet to see that he isn't the nice guy he appears to be.

Both Witherspoon's and Wahlberg's acting are suspect. This is an early role for both. I normally like Wahlberg, but he just wasn't at all convincing in his psycho role. I can take or leave Witherspoon. Some times she really impresses me and other times she doesn't. This is one of those where she doesn't.

Overall I guess it's entertaining enough to hold your attention for awhile, but don't expect anything above average here.

David: Hey Mr. Walka!
July 11, 2011
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

    1. David McCall: Hey Mr. Walka!
    – Submitted by Folashade K (14 months ago)
    1. Nicole Walker: Everybody says one thing and then does another.
    – Submitted by Folashade K (14 months ago)
    1. David McCall: Nicole, get me a Coke.
    – Submitted by Folashade K (14 months ago)
    1. David McCall: You filthy little whore!
    – Submitted by Folashade K (14 months ago)
    1. David McCall: Just you and me Nicole, nobody else.
    2. Nicole Walker: Nobody else.
    3. David McCall: Do you want me?
    4. Nicole Walker: Yes.
    5. David McCall: Tell me, tell me you want me.
    6. Nicole Walker: I want you David.
    7. David McCall: Yeah?
    8. Nicole Walker: David?
    9. David McCall: Yeah?
    10. Nicole Walker: I love you.
    – Submitted by Folashade K (14 months ago)
    1. Nicole Walker: Isn't this the car they stopped making 'cause it, I don't know, blows up or something?
    2. David McCall: Guess that's why I got her.
    – Submitted by Folashade K (14 months ago)
View all quotes (12)

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Foreign Titles

  • Fear (1996) (DE)
  • Fear (1996) (UK)
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