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Title: Swimfan  
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Subject: Erika Christensen, Clayne Crawford, Giles Nuttgens, Jason Ritter, List of films featuring mental disorders
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Theatrical release poster
Directed by John Polson
Produced by Joseph M. Caracciolo Jr.
John Penotti
Written by Charles Bohl
Phillip Schneider
Starring Jesse Bradford
Erika Christensen
Shiri Appleby
Clayne Crawford
Jason Ritter
Dan Hedaya
Music by Louis Febre (score)
John Debney (theme)
Cinematography Giles Nuttgens
Edited by Sarah Flack
GreeneStreet Films
Cobalt Media Group
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release dates
  • September 6, 2002 (2002-09-06)
Running time
85 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $10 million[1]
Box office $34,411,240[1]

Swimfan, also known as Fanatica, is a 2002 American teen psychological thriller film directed by John Polson and written by Charles Bohl and Phillip Schneider. The film stars Jesse Bradford, Erika Christensen, and Shiri Appleby.


  • Plot 1
  • Cast 2
  • Reception 3
  • Soundtrack 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7


Ben Cronin (Jesse Bradford) is a star swimmer of his high school's swim team. His coach informs him that Stanford University scouts will appear at next week's swim meet. Ben and his girlfriend Amy (Shiri Appleby) discuss their future plans. Amy has her heart set on going to school in Rhode Island, but explains that she will go to school in California to stay close to Ben. The next day, Ben nearly runs his car into Madison Bell (Erika Christensen) and gives her a ride home as an apology. Later, he realizes that Madison left her notebook in his car. The notebook is filled with music notes, and Ben spots his initials written inside a staff. When he brings the notebook to return it, he meets Madison's cousin, Christopher (James Debello). Madison appears stressed, and explains that she hasn't eaten all day, so Ben offers to take her to dinner. At dinner, Ben tells Madison about his girlfriend, but Madison does not appear too bothered and explains that she has a boy waiting for her in New York City.

Ben shares some of his past with Madison; he began doing drugs five years ago, which led to crime and six months in juvenile hall, which "saved him" because he ultimately realized his passion and talent for swimming. Although Ben tries to end the date, Madison convinces him to go to the pool. Her aggressive flirtation lures Ben in, and despite his initial hesitancy, the two end up having sex. However, both agree to remain friends and agree not to discuss their steamy encounter with anyone.

The next night, Ben goes to a party at Amy's house. Amy introduces Ben to her new friend, who turns out to be Madison. The two pretend to have not met one another yet. Shortly after, Madison begins to obsess over Ben—she stops by his house to meet his mom and bombards Ben with e-mails and instant messages. Ben realizes her unhealthy behavior and furiously demands that she leave him alone. Ben's lying begins to eat at him, and he decides he will confess his infidelity to Amy, but Madison tells Amy first. Madison begins dating Ben's rival teammate, Josh. Right before their biggest swim competition, Ben is disqualified for having steroids in his urine. Ben is outraged and suspects that Madison had convinced Josh to set him up. Ben confronts Josh about the drug test, revealing his suspicion. Days later, Madison accidentally calls Josh by Ben's name while they are kissing in a car. Josh realizes that Madison's obsession with Ben is real, and tells her off.

Ben tries to tell Amy everything, but she doesn't believe him. The next day, Ben goes to the pool, where he finds Josh dead. The police suspect that Ben is to blame for Josh's murder. To prove his innocence, Ben breaks into Madison's room to find evidence against her. He discovers a bottle of steroids, and a creepy shrine of his personal belongings that she has been secretly stashing. Christopher warns Ben of a similar case regarding a man named Jake Donnelly. When Ben visits Jake Donnelly (Monroe Mann) in the hospital, a nurse (Patricia Rae) tells him that Jake's girlfriend Madison survived the crash.

Madison disguises herself as Ben and steals his car. She follows Amy home from school and runs Amy off the road, and again Ben is framed for the crime. That night at the hospital, Ben and a few friends (including Christopher) record Madison confessing her crime and intentions, causing The police to arrest Madison. She manages to escape custody by stealing an officer's gun and shooting the two policemen escorting her. She then goes to Ben's house and takes a recovering Amy as a hostage to the school's swimming pool. As Ben watches, Madison throws a handcuffed and chairbound Amy into the pool. Madison attacks them with the handle of a pool cleaner, and Ben grabs one end, pulling her into the pool. As Madison does not know how to swim, she drowns while Ben frees Amy from her handcuffs and carries her out of the pool. Ben gives Amy mouth to mouth and she becomes conscious and they both look at Madison's dead body in the pool.

Some time later, at a swim meet, Ben is a spectator. He goes outside to his car, where he and Amy kiss and happily drive away.



The worldwide box office gross was $34,411,240, with nearly a third of that earned during its domestic first-place showing on its opening weekend.[1]

Review aggregate website Rotten Tomatoes holds a 14% "Rotten" rating, with the consensus, "A Fatal Attraction rip-off, Swimfan is a predictable, mediocre thriller."[2]

Peter Bradshaw gave the film two stars out of five, calling it a "teen Fatal Attraction with an unappetising extra helping of Scream" and saying it lacks "the sardonic wit that parts of the script had seemed initially to promise".[3] Variety described it as a "chiller resolutely without chills, in which even the pool water always seems heated. And inasmuch as the pic never owns up to its own trashiness, it's not even enjoyable camp—like Mary Lambert's recent The In Crowd—even though there's about as much underage drinking, heavy petting and full-on sex as you can imagine this side of a very surprising PG-13 rating."[4]


Soundtrack album by Various artists
Released August 27, 2002
Genre Various
Label TVT Records
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic [5]

Track listing

No. Title Music Length
1. "Everything"   Pacifier (Shihad) 4:27
2. "Greater Than Less Than"   Saliva 4:49
3. "Cave"   Celebrity 3:33
4. "Deny" (Acoustic) Default 3:53
5. "Slow Down"   Wayne 4:29
6. "Black"   Sevendust 4:09
7. "Whole"   Flaw 3:49
8. "Down In Me"   Allergic 3:01
9. "Roll Over & Play Dead"   Portable 3:36
10. "Clueless"   Pay the Girl 3:50
11. "Too Much Too Soon"   Llama 3:35
12. "Jesus Says"   Ash 4:43

See also


  1. ^ a b c Swimfan at Box Office Mojo
  2. ^ Swimfan at Rotten Tomatoes
  3. ^  
  4. ^ Foundas, Scott (September 8, 2002). "Swimfan".  
  5. ^ "Swimf@n > Overview".  

External links

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