199 user 46 critic

What About Bob? (1991)

PG | | Comedy | 17 May 1991 (USA)
1:02 | Trailer
A successful psychotherapist loses his mind after one of his most dependent patients, an obsessive-compulsive neurotic, tracks him down during his family vacation.


Frank Oz


Alvin Sargent (story), Laura Ziskin (story) | 1 more credit »
4,369 ( 237)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Bill Murray ... Bob Wiley
Richard Dreyfuss ... Dr. Leo Marvin
Julie Hagerty ... Fay Marvin
Charlie Korsmo ... Siggy Marvin
Kathryn Erbe ... Anna Marvin
Tom Aldredge ... Mr. Guttman
Susan Willis Susan Willis ... Mrs. Guttman
Roger Bowen ... Phil
Fran Brill ... Lily
Brian Reddy ... Carswell Fensterwald
Doris Belack ... Dr. Tomsky
Melinda Mullins ... Marie Grady
Marcella Lowery ... Betty / Switchboard Operator
Margot Welch Margot Welch ... Gwen / Switchboard Operator
Barbara Andres Barbara Andres ... Claire / Dr. Marvin's Secretary


Doctor Leo Marvin, an egotistical psychotherapist in New York City, is looking forward to his forthcoming appearance on a "Good Morning America" telecast, during which he plans to brag about "Baby Steps," his new book about emotional disorder theories in which he details his philosophy of treating patients and their phobias. Meanwhile, Bob Wiley is a recluse who is so afraid to leave his own apartment that he has to talk himself out the door. When Bob is pawned off on Leo by a psychotherapist colleague, Bob becomes attached to Leo. Leo finds Bob extremely annoying. When Leo accompanies his wife Fay, his daughter Anna, and his son Siggy to a peaceful New Hampshire lakeside cottage for a month-long vacation, Leo thinks he's been freed from Bob. Leo expects to mesmerize his family with his prowess as a brilliant husband and remarkable father who knows all there is to know about instructing his wife and raising his kids. But Bob isn't going to let Leo enjoy a quiet summer by the lake. By ... Written by Todd Baldridge

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Bob's a special kind of friend. The kind that drives you crazy!




PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Garry Marshall was considered to direct prior to Frank Oz being hired. See more »


During the chicken dinner, the amount of water changes in Siggy's water glass. See more »


[first lines]
Bob Wiley: I feel good, I feel great, I feel wonderful... I feel good, I feel great, I feel wonderful... I feel good, I feel great, I feel wonderful...
See more »

Alternate Versions

When aired on Showtime Family in April, 2018 a line of dialogue was deleted. When Bob goes to Dr. Marvin's lake home, for the first time, he senses that Dr. Marvin is angry and upset. Dr. Marvin's line, "Problems don't go away just because I do." has been cut. See more »


The Brady Bunch Theme
from "The Brady Bunch (1969)"
Music by Frank De Vol
Lyrics by Sherwood Schwartz
Performed by The Brady Bunch
See more »

User Reviews

a riot
15 January 2013 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Why don't they make movies like this anymore as a norm? Today's comedy is so low-brow and vulgar, in my opinion. "Date Night" was a film that seemed like a throwback. "What About Bob" was made in 1991, and it's super-funny.

Bill Murray plays a completely neurotic, dysfunctional personality who appears to have driven his first psychiatrist out of the business. In the opening frames, we see the doctor frantically packing as he calls psychiatrist Leo Marvin (Richard Dreyfuss), whose book, Baby Steps, has just come out to excellent reviews. Leo's at the top of the world. He won't be for long.

The former doc has passed on a patient, Bob Wiley (Bill Murray), to Dr. Marvin. Dr. Marvin patiently listens to Bill and all his many, many problems, finally stating that he can help Bill, but he's going on vacation with his family and will see Bob upon his return. That's what he thinks.

Bob manages to find out where the good doctor and his family are staying, at a lake, and, after several days of trying to board the bus to the location, manages to swallow his fears and get on. Dr. Marvin is shocked and a little disturbed to see him, especially because he's due to appear on Good Morning, America and has been practicing what he will say and doesn't want any problems.

Unfortunately, Bob is embraced by Leo's wife and children (Julie Hagerty, Charlie Korsmo, and Kathryn Erbe), who are nuts about him. Bob even manages to charm the crew of Good Morning America and gets to be on the show with Dr. Marvin, who is thrilled - not. Dr. Marvin himself becomes increasingly dysfunctional as time goes on and Bob just won't go away.

Absolutely hilarious comedy, made all the better by the fact that everyone plays it totally straight, not going for laughs. Normally I am not a huge fan of Richard Dreyfuss, but he is perfectly cast as Leo Marvin. Bill Murray is wonderful as a likable, manipulative, obsessive-compulsive, dependent neurotic who just won't take 'no' for an answer.

Lots of laughs, including Murray's opening scene, Dreyfuss trying to convince himself that Bob can leave because the rain is "letting up" while it's a monsoon, and many other scenes. If you want to laugh, don't miss this.

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Release Date:

17 May 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

What About Bob? See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »


Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,216,334, 19 May 1991

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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