Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Iain Softley|
|Produced by||Robert F. Colesberry
|Written by||Gene Brewer
|Music by||Edward Shearmur|
|Editing by||Craig McKay|
|Studio||IMF Internationale Medien und Film GmbH & Co. 2. Produktions KG|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures
Buena Vista International
Pathé and FilmFour
|Running time||120 minutes|
K-PAX is a 2001 American science fiction and mystery film directed by Iain Softley and starring Kevin Spacey, Jeff Bridges, Mary McCormack and Alfre Woodard. The screenplay, written by Gene Brewer and Charles Leavitt, is based on the novel K-PAX by Brewer about a psychiatric patient who claims to be an alien from the planet K-PAX. During his treatment, the patient demonstrates an outlook on life that ultimately proves inspirational for his fellow patients and especially for his psychiatrist.
After claiming he is an extraterrestrial from the planet 'K-PAX', 1,000 light years away in the Lyra constellation, prot (uncapitalized and rhyming with "goat", played by Kevin Spacey) is committed to the Psychiatric Institute of Manhattan. There, psychiatrist Dr. Mark Powell (Jeff Bridges) attempts to cure him of his apparent delusions. However, prot is unwavering in his ability to provide cogent answers to questions about himself, K-PAX and its civilization. Dr. Powell introduces him to a group of astrophysicists, to whom prot displays a level of knowledge that puzzles them.
Prot also exhibits considerable influence over the other patients at the Institute, each of whom believes unquestioningly that he is indeed from K-PAX. Prot, who claims to have journeyed to Earth by means of "light-travel", has explained that he can take one person with him when he instantaneously returns. Thereafter most of the patients at the institute ask to be taken to K-PAX.
Upon learning that many of his patients expect to leave Earth on July 27, Dr. Powell confronts prot, who explains that it is a predetermined date. However, Powell believes this to be a significant date in prot's life, a day on which he suffered a severe psychological trauma. Powell then decides to subject prot to regression hypnosis, which works well. Using information gained from these sessions, Powell figures out that prot may simply be an alter ego of Robert Porter, a man from New Mexico whose life has been devastated by the murder of his wife and child in 1996.
On July 27, prot is found lying, catatonic, under his bed. The other patients do not recognize Robert as he is being wheeled out of the room. In addition, one of them is missing: Bess, mute since her home was destroyed in a fire. She is never found.
The final scene's voiceover is prot explaining to Powell that the people of K-PAX have discovered that our universe will repeat its events again and again, so the mistakes we make will be repeated forever. With this in mind, Powell reconciles with his estranged son.
- Kevin Spacey as prot/Robert Porter
- Jeff Bridges as Dr. Mark Powell
- Mary McCormack as Rachel Powell
- Alfre Woodard as Dr. Claudia Villars
- David Patrick Kelly as Howie
- Saul Williams as Ernie
- Peter Gerety as Sal
- Celia Weston as Doris Archer
- Ajay Naidu as Dr. Chakraborty
- Tracy Vilar as Maria
- Melanee Murray as Bess
- John Toles-Bey as Russell
- Kimberly Scott as Joyce Trexler
- Conchata Ferrell as Betty McAllister
- Vincent Laresca as Navarro
- Norman Alden as Babbling Man
Critical response 
Some critics praised the film and the actors. Others were less enthusiastic. Roger Ebert wrote in the The Chicago Sun-Times, “I admired how the movie tantalized us with possibilities and allowed the doctor and patient to talk sensibly, if strangely, about the difference between the delusional and that which is simply very unlikely.” A. O. Scott, on the other hand, wrote in The New York Times, "K-Pax is a draggy, earnest exercise in pseudo-spiritual uplift, recycling romantic hokum about extra-terrestrial life and mental illness with wide-eyed sincerity”. At Variety, Robert Koehler said, “In a movie treating light dramatically, John Mathieson's lensing makes the screen pulsate with light, shadow and spectral color making any glossed-on special effects irrelevant.” However, Claudia Puig at USA Today concluded, “Besides being saddled with the year's worst title […] this misguided movie is shackled by its own overreaching sense of importance and foggy earnestness.” Critics at Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 41% rating.
Plagiarism lawsuit 
Complaints of plagiarism of the film Man Facing Southeast were made by its makers, and Gene Brewer and others connected with the K-PAX film were subsequently sued in November 2001. The complaint was later withdrawn, and Gene Brewer went on to release a memoir exploring his inspiration for the books called Creating K-PAX - or Are You Sure You Want To Be A Writer?.
See also 
- Chetwynd, Josh (April 20, 1998). "Smith lands on 'K-Pax' alien mystery for Uni". The Hollywood Reporter 352 (10): 1.
- "K-Pax". Chicago Sun-Times.
- Scott, A. O. (October 26, 2001). "FILM REVIEW; Now Arriving on Track 10: The 3:15 From Outer Space". The New York Times.
- Koehler, Robert (October 25, 2001). "K-Pax". Variety.
- http://www.usatoday.com/life/enter/movies/2001-10-26-k-pax-review.html. Missing or empty
- "Other Books". GeneBrewer.com. Retrieved 2010-08-08.
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: K-PAX|
- K-PAX Official Movie Website, Universal Studios
- K-PAX at the Internet Movie Database
- K-PAX (film) at the TCM Movie Database
- K-PAX (film) at AllRovi
- K-PAX at Rotten Tomatoes
|Box office number-one films of 2001 (USA)