Novocaine (2001)

R  |   |  Comedy, Crime, Drama  |  14 December 2001 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 9,385 users   Metascore: 45/100
Reviews: 104 user | 83 critic | 27 from

A dentist finds himself a murder suspect after a sexy patient seduces him & steals all of the drugs from his practice.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Polly Noonan ...
JoBe Cerny ...
Yasen Peyankov ...
Teri Cotruzzola ...
Attractive Complaining Patient
Lucina Paquet ...
Preston Maybank ...
Sally Kao ...
Chinese Wife
Quincy Wong ...
Chinese Husband


Dr. Frank Sangster is a straight-laced dentist who because of one innocent lie, finds his tidy, prosperous life transformed into a comic quagmire of illicit sex, illegal drugs and inexplicable murder in this brilliantly offbeat, bitingly comedic film! Written by Thomas Nudi

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

drugs | dentist | murder | sex | sunflower | See All (76) »


Getting to the root of the problem is like pulling teeth. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, sexuality, language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

14 December 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Новокаин  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$418,098 (USA) (16 November 2001)


$2,025,238 (USA) (4 January 2002)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The second time Steve Martin plays a dentist. The first time was his role in "Little Shop of Horrors" as Orin Scrivello, albeit that character was far more "disturbed" than Frank Sangster. See more »


When first questioning Dr Sangster, Lance Phelps folds his arms twice in rapid succession between shots, without enough time to unfold them elapsing between shots. See more »


Frank: A person can lose a lot of things. He can lose his soul. He can lose his life. But I've always said the worst thing a man can lose is his teeth. It's true, I should know.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Remote recording by Guy Charbonneau and crew. See more »


References Double Indemnity (1944) See more »


Performed by Penny
Written by Frank Egan and David Daignault
Published by Sounds Easy Publishing and P&D Productions
Courtesy of Sounds Easy Studios
See more »

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User Reviews

What an unexpected surprise!
7 December 2001 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Novocaine is a very strange film. It doesn't make up its mind whether it's a take off on a genre or is it playing straight. That said, the story has a lot of laughs and it was a complete surprise given the negative comments one had heard about this film. David Watkins' script and direction give this film a different look of what Hollywood is giving us lately. Steve Martin is a very difficult actor to cast and he has to have the right vehicle and direction in order to excel, as he does here. Sometimes Mr. Martin comes across rather shallow in some of his screen portrayals, but as the dentist at the center of this comedy, he is at the top of his craft. Laura Dern is just perfect in her role. She keeps getting better all the time, whether it's comedy, as it is here, or her other film this year, Focus. She's an actress who doesn't repeat herself. She's a true original. Helena Bonham-Carter is perfect as the junkie that appears in Steve Martin's life. Quite a change for her image, better known for her appearances in serious films. This must have been quite a turn around for this actress, better remembered for her work in serious English drama. The most remarkable scenes are those of the great Kevin Bacon as an actor tailing David Keith in preparation for an upcoming police film. He is hilarious as the method actor in search of ways to interpret the real life detective in the movies.

All in all, this is a very satisfying comedy.

24 of 32 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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