San Francisco Chronicle

By Peter Stack
A perfect vehicle for Robin Williams. He again plays the compassionate, manic clown that has been his main character throughout his movie career. And audiences love his wild end runs.
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So the prognosis is generally positive, though there may be a touch too much sugar in this motion picture panacea, which is, in places, shamelessly sentimental to an extraordinarily manipulative degree.
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San Francisco Examiner

Could have been maudlin from start to finish. Instead, more than half the 154-minute film is riveting - filled with funny, touching bits that don't stoop to cheap sentimentality.
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Christian Science Monitor

By David Sterritt
The movie starts with insights about the need for more humane values in health care, then buries them under an avalanche of frivolities, vulgarities, and clichés.
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By James Berardinelli
The kind of film that will work for an audience that's just interested in having an emotional experience (with a happy ending) without caring how obviously or clumsily they are manipulated. I find this sort of sledgehammer film making to be offensive, but there are those who enjoy it.
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Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
Made me want to spray the screen with Lysol. This movie is shameless. It's not merely a tearjerker. It extracts tears individually by liposuction, without anesthesia.
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TV Guide

By Angel Cohn
Williams isn't really playing Adams: He's once again playing himself, and the act is getting tired.
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New York Daily News

Patch Adams is either a brilliantly sly, straight-faced parody of the standard Robin Williams tearjerker or the soggiest movie of the season. [24 December 1998, p. 29]
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The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Ray Conlogue
Patch Adams is a flawed visionary, but surely he deserves better than this crass and manipulative movie.
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Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
Oooh, this is toxic.
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25 out of 100
Generally unfavorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.