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Your 9 Favorite Doctor Movies


When we asked you to send us your favorite doctor movie suggestions, you bombarded us with a flurry of Tweets and Facebook posts. Here is the tally.

If there were Oscars for the best doctor movies of all time, which would you nominate?
Earlier this year, when we asked you to send us your favorite doctor movie suggestions, you bombarded us with a flurry of Tweets and Facebook posts. When we assembled those suggestions and asked our online readers to vote for their favorites, you delivered. So which doctor movies have you dubbed the best of the best? Here are the results:

M*A*S*H (21%)
This 1970 comedy/drama set in a Korean War field hospital is a must-see for physicians. It details the escapades of young doctors who, despite encountering the horrors of war, manage to retain their sense of humor, fun, and inspiration.

Patch Adams (17%)
This comedy/drama, released in 1998, portrays the experiences of a medical student (Robin Williams) who truly believes that sometimes, laughter is the best medicine.

Something the Lord Made (11%)
This 2004 film brings to life the true story of the 34-year partnership between Vivien Thomas, an African American janitor-turned-pioneering surgical technician and renowned cardiac surgeon Alfred Blalock. Set in 1930s Nashville, the film tells the story of how Thomas, who did not have a formal education beyond high school, nevertheless overcame racism and poverty to develop the surgical techniques used to treat blue baby syndrome and to become a teacher of many of the nation’s top surgeons.

Doctor Zhivago (11%)
Based on a 1957 novel of the same name, Doctor Zhivago tells the compelling tale of married Russian doctor and poet Yuri Zhivago, who falls for a political activist’s wife during the Bolshevik Revolution. The 1965 movie, remade in 2002, is loaded with romance, drama, and interesting historical footnotes.

The Doctor (11%)
What happens when a successful doctor gets a serious illness? Upon being diagnosed with throat cancer, rich, successful Jack McKee (William Hurt) learns about medicine from the patient’s perspective in this 1991 film, which is partly based on the memoir "A Taste of My Own Medicine."

The Hospital (8%)
Set in a teaching hospital in New York City in 1971, this comedy tells the tale of hospital medicine chief Dr. Bock, whose life is in shambles after his wife leaves him and his hospital starts to fall apart. But just as Dr. Bock considers suicide, a series of upturns - including a love connection - turns things around.

Flatliners (6%)
This 1990 thriller starring Julia Roberts and Kiefer Sullivan centers on a group of medical students who discover how to bring themselves in and out of death.

Gifted Hands (6%)
This 2009 TV movie starring Cuba Gooding, Jr., was so widely popular it left many questioning why it didn’t air in theaters. The film examines the true story of Ben Carson, a renowned brain surgeon who overcame obstacles to change the course of medicine forever.

Awakenings (4%)
This movie, released in 1990, explores a medical miracle and the consequences it brings. In the film, a British neurologist (Robin Williams) finds a drug that revives several patients who have been comatose for years (including Robert De Niro). When the patients awaken, they face a new world.

Marisa Torrieri is an associate editor for Physicians Practice. She can be reached at

Aubrey Westgate is an associate editor for Physicians Practice. She can be reached at

This article originally appeared in the February 2012 issue of Physicians Practice.

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