Director : Iain Softley
Writer : K Pax by Gene Brewer
Starring : Kevin Spacey, Jeff Bridges.David Patrick Kelly. USA. 2h
You’ll want to believe him, or so the poster claims but this film delivers two very different stories and makes them both very believable. And years after watching K Pax for the first time I still have the (guilty) pleasure of sitting down and enjoying the beefed up psychological thriller/ sci fi adventure as Prot builds bonds with the characters of a mental hospital and horrible suspicions are realised.
Jeff bridges plays a plot missing psychiatrist, Dr. Mark Powell, who becomes fatherly with Prot (Spacey) a patient who claims to come from another planet called K Pax, and the evidence suggests that he is, he has knowledge of heavenly bodies and strange habits of disappearing from a secure hospital. While Prot is weaving his magic among the inmates, helping to cure them where science is willing to only treat them, Dr Powell does some investigations into Prot, based details gained from their regression sessions and discovers that he might be more human than he claims.
Is he crazy?…or is he light years ahead of us?
Is he, isn’t he, it’s a question that plagues every essence of the film. Prot has nothing to prove, he knows the truth, but everyone around him, crazy or sane are trying to find the right answer. Through paranoia and depressives, Prot manages to enrich the lives of all the people he meets, even if his methods of suffocation are a little oddball… Bridges is on a constant downer and almost fades into the background at times, but the quirky inmates are hard to contend with when it comes to stage presence. David Patrick Kelly is quite reserved and quiet compared to his Warriors role but there is a deep sense of community within the hospital, more like One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975) than Twelve Monkeys (1995). There is a twisty ending, as you’d imagine, and a lot of light and laughter until the stress kicks in, but Prot just carries on shuffling around in his dark glasses with a smug smile on his face… because.. He knows.. The truth. Whatever Prot is, human or otherwise, it’s important to take his message of forgiveness and love to heart, skip the red tape and be the better man not matter what, even if the information is possibly coming from an alien..
R – Shipping News (2001), Awakening (1990)
L – Mental Health on Film, Aliens on Earth
A – Interpretation , when the movie leaves it up to you…
5s – Jeff Bridges, Kevin Spacey