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Do you have a phobia?
Maybe you’re afraid of heights? Spiders? Enclosed or crowded spaces?
Phobias can seem irrational and absurd to some people. Some might even think you are being dramatic and overreacting. But the truth is, phobias are normal and quite common.
It is important to understand that phobias can be overwhelming and devastating. While a person might not be able to fully articulate why they have a fear of a certain thing, situation, or activity, that doesn’t mean their fear isn’t valid.
In this article, we have gathered 17 movies about dealing with specific phobias. Some of them portray what it is like to have a specific phobia, while others try to give the audience the actual feeling that comes with a fear.
Let’s check them out and get a better understanding of phobias!
What You Will Learn
If you are afraid of spiders, then Arachnophobia might keep you up at night. But it is still a great movie that deals with how arachnophobes struggle with their fear. Can you imagine how daunting it would be if spiders started to breed and kill people? We don’t really like the idea of that.
Paul Conroy (played by Ryan Reynolds) gets buried six feet under in this movie about terrorists and the government’s efforts to deal with them. Yes, you read that right—and it’s quite the spoiler. This movie will leave you heartbroken (and probably claustrophobic) in the end. Imagine being in Reynolds shoes, trapped in a coffin the entire time the movie was being filmed. Sounds rough!
3. The Descent
There are two phobias you should watch out for in this movie: claustrophobia and nyctophobia. The film will leave you gasping for air at first (while the actors go down a very tight and steep road), and then make you thirst for light (while they deal with the darkness).
The movie is a combination of drama and horror. It is also a show that primarily features women. Maybe we should be a bit nicer to these ladies!
Some people think clowns are amusing, while others find them horrifying and eerie. If you have a strong fear of clowns, we suggest that you give this film a pass. It just might give you a heart attack!
On the other hand, if you really like horror films with kids as the main protagonists, this might be a good choice. It is a Stephen King story, after all. You are sure to feel those tingles up your spine.
Contagion is a pretty timely movie to watch, since it is about an unknown disease and we are just now coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are a germophobe, you know how horrifying it is to not know what harm a disease can bring to you and your family.
Going out is definitely out of the question—no one leaves the house! Washing your hands is a must and wearing masks and other protective gear is absolutely mandatory.
6. Nightmare on Elm Street
While the 2010 version is a great remake, we’d recommend watching the 1984 version first. Most critics say that it is a “foundational classic” of most horror films. They described it as being daunting and formidable.
If you are wondering what phobia this movie focuses on, it’s somniphobia—the fear of going to sleep. Freddy Kruger is coming for you, turning your dreams into nightmares. There’s nothing worse than that!
7. The Walk
Acrophobia is one of the most common types of fear. Heights can be scary, even to those who aren’t truly acrophobic. However, Joseph Gordon-Levitt doesn’t seem to have any fear of heights at all in this film.
If you ever wonder what it’s like to be on top of the World Trade Center, but do not have the confidence to do so yourself, then watch this movie. It’s a real treat for those who love high, open spaces, but a nightmare for those who fear heights.
Have you ever seen a huge (as in really huge) shark? That’s what this classic horror film is about. We aren’t even afraid of sharks, but this film made us fear the ocean for quite a while.
Sharks are beautiful, wonderful creatures, but they are also apex predators that can kill in an instant. No wonder they are so scary!
Do you fear ghosts? Lots of people do, and There are a lot of movies that focus on ghosts and other supernatural things, but this movie takes it to a whole other level. After you finish watching it, you’ll be haunted by the thought of what if all of those things are actually real?
Many people fear snakes because they are creepy and dangerous. Along with the fear of heights and spiders, ophidiophobia is probably one of the most common fears.
If you are ophidiophobic, this movie might just scare the heck out of you. We watched it (most people have already done so) and were creeped out at the sight of the snakes slithering around Jennifer Lopez—and we don’t even have ophidiophobia.
11. Body Double
Body Double is an exciting film for those who like thrilling murder mysteries, but maybe not for claustrophobics. Craig Wasson stars as Jake Scully, a man who has a crush on his neighbor, but then eventually witnesses her death through his camera lens.
Curious and bothered, he starts looking for answers to the murder. However, his claustrophobia gets in the way of his investigation. How is he going to solve the murder when his phobia is holding him back?
Cujo is a combination of both claustrophobia and cynophobia. It’s hard to believe that some people are afraid of dogs—after all, they are man’s best friend. But when they are violent and rabid, they can become a total nightmare.
This film is based on Stephen King’s novel of the same name. It is about a mother and her son who find themselves stuck inside a car when a dog named Cujo starts to turn rabid. It’s such a great movie, but very disturbing and sad at the same time.
13. The Shining
If you are a Stephen King fan, you have probably noticed that this list is full of films based on his books. King has long been the king of terror, and his books often depict phobias and intense psychological trauma and fear. One of his most popular books was also made into a successful movie: The Shining.
Award-winning actor Jack Nicholson plays Jack Torrance, a writer and recovering alcoholic who accepts a part-time job as a hotel caretaker and moves to Colorado with his family. Soon, supernatural events begin to occur and an unknown spirit starts to possess Jack’s body.
14. Cast Away
Do you have monophobia? It’s normal to feel scared when you’re alone, especially if you are used to being with people all the time. It becomes a problem, however, if you find you are paranoid and paralyzed with fear whenever there is no one around.
Tom Hanks finds himself completely alone in this movie about a castaway stuck on a deserted island. Fortunately, Hanks is such a great actor with a nice, comforting demeanor, so the movie isn’t actually scary to watch.
15. Cabin Fever
Cabin Fever might freak out all of the germophobes out there, but it’s a great film that combines dark humor with gore and horror. Embrace your fears, put on a mask, grab a bottle of hand sanitizer, and buckle up for a terrifying ride.
16. Saw II
If you know the Saw series, you might agree that Saw II has one of the most gruesome scenes in the history of film. Remember the “needle pit” scene? Yes, we are talking about trypanophobia right now—the extreme fear of needles—which is surprisingly prevalent among adults.
We recommend this film if you are a thrill-seeker who loves gory horror film. For everyone else—tread carefully. Saw II is full-on scary!
There are tons of movies about aliens out there, but this 1979 classic perfectly captures xenophobic feelings. The characters don’t just have to deal with things that are unfamiliar—they have to face them in the most violent and frightening of settings. Alien might be gory and scary, but it’s an absolute classic and definitely worth a watch.
If you are suffering from a certain phobia, take a deep breath and relax for a moment. Your fears are valid and you don’t have to live up to other people’s expectations, but you also don’t want to spend the rest of your life living in fear. Take a break from your phobia by diving into these movies about other people’s phobias! Hopefully they make you feel better, not worse!