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'''''Patch Adams''''' (1998) is a VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory movie starring Creator/RobinWilliams as Hunter "Patch" Adams, a medical student who wants to treat people, not just diseases. To do this, he bucks authority, dresses up as a clown, and acts silly and (on occasion) unprofessionally. Also features Creator/PhilipSeymourHoffman in a smaller role as Patch's roommate.

The movie centres largely around Adam's clashing with the old guard of medicine over how to treat patients, specifically their cold and detached bedside manner. Patch argues they need to be more involved with the person and not treat them as another statistic, whilst his superiors point out that getting emotionally involved helps neither doctor nor patient.

Notably the film received a fair bit of criticism from the ''real'' Dr. Adams, among many, over the film's representation of his views and philosophies. He believed it simplified all his work into "laughter is the best medicine." Furthermore it fabricates entire events, such as making his best friend into a woman to create a love interest, and having Patch commit several felonies which naturally his real life counterpart never did. To make matters worse, the money promised to Adams out of the film's profits by the studio were never paid to him--this massively delayed construction of the hospital he wished to build.

!!This film contains examples of:

* AloneWithThePsycho:
** In the beginning of the film, Patch is forced to room with a man who goes apeshit on a regular basis in reaction to imaginary squirrels on the ground. Patch is, to say the least, uncomfortable with the arrangement, but helping his roommate "fight off" the squirrels long enough to reach the restroom inspires him to devote his life to helping people.
** [[spoiler:Carin's visit to Larry Silver's house. It doesn't end well for either of them.]]
* AwardBaitSong: [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1sYjDc8i4I "Where My Heart Will Take Me"]] ([[RefrainFromAssuming aka "Faith of the Heart"]]) by Rod Stewart, which infamously became the RealSongThemeTune of ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise''.
* BrokenAesop: The movie makes the cases that doctors should care for their patients emotionally as well as physically, but midway through the movie [[spoiler:getting too close to a patient causes Carin to be killed]].
* BunnyEarsLawyer: Patch does numerous "funny" things at the hospital, annoying Dean Walcott, but Patch's grades are among the highest in the class. Which is even stranger considering that he never studies or is shown on-camera utilizing medical knowledge.
* CharacterTitle: Dr. Hunter ''"Patch" Adams''
* CloudCuckoolander: Patch, because certainly a doctor that dresses like a clown is a weirdo.
* ComedyAsAWeapon: Patch believes in helping patients through humour and laughter.
%%* DanBrowned
* DeanBitterman: Dean Walcott twice attempts to have Patch dismissed from the school despite his high grades, believing his methods demean the doctor-patient relationship and undermine the dignity of the medical profession.
* DrivenToSuicide: Patch's attempted suicide is what kickstarts the story. [[spoiler: He nearly attempts it again later on]].
* DrJerk: Every single one of the doctors, except Patch Adams, is cold and refers to patients by their room number or disease.
* FanDisservice: [[spoiler:Patch moons the audience at his graduation.]]
* GenderFlip: The person Carin is based on was a man in real life.
* IdiotBall: Carin answers the phone and hears an [[ObviouslyEvil obviously insane man]] who wants "somebody to talk to." So naturally, she goes to his house alone. [[spoiler:It doesn't go well.]]
* InformedAttribute: Patch's medical knowledge. The audience never sees him study or actually tend to patients, but is just told his grades are among the highest in his class, and when challenged by his roommate to explain how that is when he doesn't study as much as everyone else, Patch just gives him a TheReasonYouSuckSpeech instead. This was one of the criticisms levied by the real Adams.
* {{Jerkass}}: Patch is this in the eyes of the Dean and initially to Carin. Some of his antics, such as the gynecologist setup, could be construed more as this than the opposite intention of being humorous.
* KarmaHoudini: Let's just say Patch gets away with a lot of stuff he shouldn't.
* {{Koan}}: "If you focus on the problem, you can't see the solution!"
* LampshadeHanging: Patch's InformedAttribute about his medical knowledge is pointed out by his roommate, who says "I know what you study, or should I say ''don't'' study."
* TheLancer: Patch's friend and fellow student Truman buys in to his ideas and becomes his sidekick at his psuedo-clinic ranch.
%%* PunchClockVillain
* RapeAsBackstory: Carin was apparently molested as a child.
%%* TheObiWan: Mendelson
* SmiteMeOMightySmiter: After [[spoiler:Carin's death]], Patch returns to the cliff overlooking his land, rails at God's apparent apathy towards human suffering and lack of compassion for each other, and [[spoiler:considers jumping off the edge before spotting a butterfly, recalling Carin's story about how caterpillars get a second chance]].
* StuffedIntoTheFridge: [[spoiler: Carin was Patch's love interest, and then is killed in a way that serves to pile angst onto Patch and make him question his decisions.]]
* StrawFeminist: Carin is obviously insecure about being a woman in a male-dominated profession, and refuses Patch's (platonic!) advances out of fear of showing weakness, and contempt for his carefree attitude.
* StrawmanPolitical: The social issue Patch is facing was not a revolutionary idea (the term "bedside manner" long predates him entering medical school), but almost all of the people opposing him act as though being apathetic [[DrJerk Dr. Jerks]] is the supreme goal of medicine.
* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: Lots of changes were made. Most notably, the romantic love interest Carin was really a male best friend of Patch Adams [[spoiler:who died in an automobile accident, not by being murdered by a mentally ill patient as Carin was]].