7.4/10
173,502
559 user 132 critic

K-PAX (2001)

Trailer
2:46 | Trailer
PROT is a patient at a mental hospital who claims to be from a faraway planet named K-PAX. His psychiatrist tries to help him, only to begin to doubt his own explanations.

Director:

Iain Softley

Writers:

Gene Brewer (novel), Charles Leavitt (screenplay)
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Spacey ... Prot
Jeff Bridges ... Dr. Mark Powell
Mary McCormack ... Rachel Powell
Alfre Woodard ... Dr. Claudia Villars
David Patrick Kelly ... Howie
Saul Williams ... Ernie
Peter Gerety ... Sal
Celia Weston ... Doris Archer
Ajay Naidu ... Dr. Chakraborty
Tracy Vilar ... Maria
Melanee Murray Melanee Murray ... Bess
John Toles-Bey ... Russell
Kimberly Scott ... Joyce Trexler
Conchata Ferrell ... Betty McAllister
Vincent Laresca ... Navarro
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Storyline

PROT is a patient at a mental hospital who claims to be from a faraway planet named K-PAX. His psychiatrist tries to help him, only to begin to doubt his own explanations.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Change the way you look at the world. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a sequence of violent images, and brief language and sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Prot says he his from the binary star system of Agape and Satori. These are certainly poetic appellations by the writers; "Agape" is the Greco-Christian term for transcendent unconditional love, whereas "satori" is a Japanese Buddhist term for enlightenment, or self-understanding. Of the few hundred or so stars with proper given titles (as opposed to a star-catalog number), none have those names. See more »

Goofs

Prot removes his glasses and lays them down so that the top of the glasses are laying on the table. Later, when Mark Powell rushes in, the glasses are lying right-side-up and facing the opposite direction. See more »

Quotes

Prot: You seem overly upset, Mark. To borrow a phrase from Navarro, you need to chill.
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Crazy Credits

After the credits, there's a view of the stars and then Dr. Mark Powell looks through the lens of his telescope as if he is looking for the stars of K-PAX. He walks in his yard, and the movie ends. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy Drives a Car! (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Safe and Sound
Written by Sheryl Crow
Produced and Performed by Sheryl Crow
Courtesy of A&M Records
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User Reviews

 
Inspired storytelling
12 May 2002 | by FlickJunkie-2See all my reviews

K-Pax is a very intriguing film. Is Prot (Kevin Spacey) really an alien, or is he a mentally deranged human who just thinks he is an alien? That is the question that Dr. Powell (Jeff Bridges) must answer before the self proclaimed deadline that Prot sets for his departure from Earth.

As the film unfolds and more evidence is uncovered, both theories grow in credibility. His ability to map from memory the area of the galaxy where his home planet is located indicates a knowledge that no human could possibly possess. Yet the hypnosis sessions lead us to a real person with a very real and traumatic life, filled with devastating events that could have caused such a personality aberration. The ending seems to give the answer, but is just ambiguous enough to make you wonder if you really know. Normally, I don't like lady or tiger endings, but this one is tantalizing. I have my own theory that fits all the clues, but I don't know that my theory is any more correct than anyone else's.

Director Iain Softley (`Wings of the Dove') spins the tale delicately, with great skill. This is a rare example of the director staying in the shadows and inducing outstanding acting performances out of talented actors to let the story dominate. This is not to say that the directing is technically inferior, because it is excellent. However, Softley remains unobtrusive, delivering great power through the use of subtlety, a pleasant change from today's vanguard directors who visually grab and shake the viewer as if to scream, `Look how brilliant I am!'

Kevin Spacey once again delivers a marvelous performance as Prot. This is a part that is extraordinarily demanding, requiring Spacey to render the cool and logical Prot one minute, and then switch gears to conjure his tormented alter ego under hypnosis the next. Spacey is so believable as both alien and human, it makes the viewer's task that much more difficult. Jeff Bridges is also terrific as the relentless psychologist who becomes obsessed with learning the truth about Prot.

This is inspired storytelling for the thoughtful viewer. I rated it a 9/10. If you must have closure at the end of a film, this movie will be very frustrating. However, if you like a fascinating mystery that keeps you thinking long after the credits, you won't be disappointed.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 October 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

K-PAX See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$68,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$17,215,275, 28 October 2001

Gross USA:

$50,338,485

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$65,001,485
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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