United Dental Alliance
United Dental Alliance

Lights, Camera, Cue the Dentist!

| April 28, 2013

With the Academy Awards right around the corner, we thought we’d take a look at films that feature dentists as the main characters. When it comes to Hollywood, dentists usually get a pretty raw deal in the movies. More often than not, when you see a dentist up on the silver screen, they are either a sleaze ball or a maniac. For every time a director uses a dentist’s drill to ratchet up the tension in a scene, there are probably hundreds of dentists who watch, shaking their heads in dismay.

Well, after a little bit of searching, I’ve come up with some alternatives. Here are four films where dentists are portrayed in a bit more positive light.


British funny man Ricky Gervais (better known for British television comedies like The Office and Extras) stars as Bertram Pincus in this supernatural comedy about a dentist who suffers a near-death experience while visiting the doctor for a colonoscopy. Afterwards, he’s able to see ghosts, who ask him to help settle the unfinished business of their lives.

Along the way, Gervais meets a crew of characters, played by Greg Kinnear, Billy Campbell, and Tea Leoni.


The great comedian Steve Martin stars in this David Atkins tragic comedy. Martin plays a run of the mill dentist named Frank Sangster who gets caught in a web of deceit, DEA investigations, and death after meeting a strange, exciting woman named Susan Ivey.

Famous faces like Helena Bonham Carter, Laura Dern, and Elias Koteas show up along the way. And, there’s even an oddball appearance by Kevin Bacon as an actor researching a role with the police. A little bonus film trivia: Kevin Bacon had a cameo in the Thanksgiving film favorite Planes, Trains and Automobiles, also starring Steve Martin.


Director Christopher Guest helped bring about the “mockumentary” style film when he made the classic This is Spinal Tap. I’m still looking for an amp that will go up to eleven. Known for his large ensemble casts and oddball humor, Guest directs and stars in this film is set in the fictional town of Blaine, Missouri where a bunch of community theater actors are looking to make it big.

Eugene Levy plays Dr. Alan Pearl, the small-town dentist who wants to break out as an actor. In addition, Catherine O’Hara, Parker Posey, and Fred Willard all have hilarious roles in the film, too. For any dentist who has ever been bitten by the acting bug, this film could either encourage you, or make you realize to stick to your day job.


If you’re looking for more of a straight drama, this film might be up your alley. Campbell Scott, Hope Davis, and Denis Leary star in this motion picture about Dr. David Hurst (Scott), a dentist who begins to suspect that his wife is having an affair. While he struggles with the notion of confronting her, he begins to have imaginary interactions with a former patient (Leary).

The film won Hope Davis a 2003 New York Film Critic’s Circle Award for her portrayal of Dana Hurst, Dr. Hurst’s wife.

Do you have a favorite movie involving a dentist? Share with us in the comments section below!

William Bassman – Owner – http://www.engagedental.com

Tags: dental movies, dental websites, Engage Dental, movies, Waiting for Guffman, websites for endodontists

Category: Misc

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