The true story of a heroic man, Hunter Patch Adams, determined to become a medical doctor because he enjoys helping people. He ventured where no doctor had ventured before, using humour and pathos.



(book) (as Hunter Doherty Adams), (book) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 7 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
James Greene ...


Patch Adams is determined to become a medical doctor because he enjoys helping people. Unfortunately, the medical and scientific community does not appreciate his methods of healing the sick, while the actual patients, medical professors, and hospital nurses all appreciate the work *he* can do, because they are unable to do it. Written by Ari Herzog <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Laughter is contagious. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language and crude humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

25 December 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Docteur Patch  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$25,262,280 (USA) (25 December 1998)


$135,014,968 (USA) (28 May 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The fifth time Robin Williams has played a doctor in the space of nine years, after Awakenings (1990), Nine Months (1995), Good Will Hunting (1997), and What Dreams May Come (1998). See more »


Camera and boom equipment are visible (and in motion) in the door window as the gynecologists are approaching the door between the paper mache "legs" that Patch Adams prepared for their arrival. See more »


Joletta: [Joletta has just met Patch] Look here, Judy, another future boss.
Hunter Patch Adams: Oh, I wouldn't look at it like that.
Joletta: You may think I'm exaggerating, but in another five years you'll be so full of yourself you'll have to hang a cup out your ass just to catch the excess.
See more »


Referenced in The Holiday (2006) See more »


Into the Mystic
Written by Van Morrison
Performed by Van Morrison
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

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User Reviews

Not-That-Sugary Look At A Good-Hearted Man
9 November 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

There are a lot of sugary clichés I use - in a nice way - to describe this story about a doctor with a good heart who truly believes in the healing power of laughter. Based on a real-life person (who looks a lot wackier than Robin Williams, who plays him in this movie), the story has its usual rebel fights-the- straight-laced-establishment cliché but is a warm, sentimental film that can't help but make you feel really good when it's all over. It's hardly all sugar, either, as there are not only frustrations but an immensely-shocking tragedy in here.

For a nice "family" movie, the profanity and sexual innuendos are a little much, so I don't think is one for the kids. (They wouldn't like it anyway.) Adults shouldn't mind. The language isn't that bad, anyway.

"Patch's" remedy for not only sickness but to get-the-girl is humor. It takes him awhile but he softens the hard-shell woman he's after (Monica Potter) and even the super stiff-ass roommate (Philip Seymour Hoffman) in the end. This film is tailor-made for Williams and his great sense of humor and ability to ad-lib. He has a lot of funny lines in here.

There is one little kid in here who's smile is one of the best I've ever seen on a human being, and I wish the boy had more scenes. The touches of sentimentality he brings, along with the laughter, is wonderful to see and heart- warming, to say the least. This is an inspiring story with comedy and romance and drama. That's what makes it so effective: a good combination of genres. One minute you're laughing, a few minutes later you have tears in your eyes.

A wonderful story, nicely acted and nicely told.

47 of 74 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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