Tuesday, 12 August 2014 | MYT 6:00 PM

5 essential doctor characters played by Robin Williams

Robin Williams in 'Patch Adams'.

Robin Williams in 'Patch Adams'.

The late actor had a knack for portraying doctors on the big screen.

Did you know that Robin Williams, who passed away on Monday at age 63, had played two former US presidents in different films? He was Teddy Roosevelt (Theodore Roosevelt, 26th US president) in Night At The Museum and its sequel, and Dwight D. Eisenhower (24th US president) in Lee Daniels’ The Butler.

Williams also portrayed a reverend in License To Wed and in Big Wedding, opposite Robert DeNiro, Diane Keaton and Susan Sarandon. However, you might remember the late actor playing a doctor in several movies. Here are five of them:

1. Sean Maguire (Good Will Hunting)

In this film, Williams played a psychologist presented with a challenging patient named Will Hunting who had been “rejected” by numerous other therapists for being too difficult. Sean’s treatment methods proved effective for the genius that is Will, whose dark past is affecting his present and future.

2. Hunter “Patch” Adams (Patch Adams)

Williams played real-life doctor Hunter “Patch” Adams, a physician who discovered in the 1970s that laughter really was the best medicine. Adams used humour to help treat his patients; unfortunately many of his peers in the medical world refused to accept it as a proper treatment. Williams was the perfect choice to play Adams because of his ability to be a clown without actually being a clown.

3. Dr Malcolm Sayer (Awakenings)

Based on a 1973 memoir written by a British neurologist named Oliver Sacks, this award-winning film features Williams as a doctor posted in hospital ward full of patients who have been in a catatonic state for decades. He discovers that a new drug proved beneficial to the patients, and starts administering it to them. However, when the patients begin to “wake up”, they face a brand new world that is both scary and exciting.

4. Dr Kosevich (Nine Months)

Hugh Grant and Julianne Moore may have been the stars of this mediocre movie, but Williams’ character, the Russian OBGYN Dr Kosevich was its saving grace. “You have a girl. Unless I cut the wrong cord,” he said in one scene, which pretty much sums up the kind of “doctor” Kosevich was.

5. Professor Phillip Brainard (Flubber)

While Williams was not a medical doctor in Flubber, his character did have a doctorare and therefore his name would have carried the title “doctor”. Anyway ... the movie was based on a Disney film called The Absent-Minded Professor, and revolved around an absent-minded professor who invented something called “flubber”, a rubbery substance that was able to help objects fly.

Tags / Keywords: Robin Williams , Movies , Films , Actors , Awakenings , Patch Adams


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