Watch The Couch Trip
- 1 hr 37 min
In the 1988 comedy film The Couch Trip, Dan Aykroyd plays John Burns, a mental patient who pretends to be a psychiatrist when his chance escape from the institution lands him in the office of world-famous psychotherapist Dr. George Maitlin (played by Walter Matthau). Maitlin is away, and his receptionist Siggy (Donna Dixon) mistakes Burns for the doctor and introduces him to Maitlin's patients.
Burns quickly realizes that he can milk the situation for all it's worth, and he begins seeing patients more or less at random, dishing out unorthodox advice and employing bizarre therapeutic methods. Among his patients are Colleen (Catherine O'Hara), a woman with severe anxiety who's unable to leave her apartment; Kent (David Clennon), a man who has been compulsively stealing even though he doesn't need the things he takes; and Donald (Charles Grodin), a man who is convinced that he's Jesus Christ.
As Burns continues to play doctor, he becomes a media sensation, with newspapers and TV stations covering his unorthodox methods of treating patients. His antics threaten to undo the work of the real Maitlin, who is stranded in a remote corner of the world and unable to get back to his practice. Meanwhile, Burns finds himself falling for Donna (Mary Gross), one of Maitlin's colleagues, who's understandably wary of a man who claims to be a psychiatrist but has little proof of his qualifications.
The Couch Trip is a fast-paced, slapstick comedy that's at times a little raunchy and a little wacky. Aykroyd is in top form as Burns, playing him as a lovable rogue who manages to stay one step ahead of the law and his own conscience. Matthau is quietly hilarious as the put-upon Maitlin, and Grodin is a scream as the messianic Donald. The movie features a number of supporting players who do a great job of fleshing out the zany world of the film, including Dixon, O'Hara, Clennon, and Gross.
At its heart, The Couch Trip is a satire of the psychiatric profession, poking fun at the various theories and methods employed by psychiatrists and therapists. Burns is able to get away with his charade because he's actually pretty good at listening to people and identifying their problems, even if his solutions are often absurd. The movie raises questions about the nature of mental illness, the role of the therapist, and the importance of human connection.
Overall, The Couch Trip is a fun, silly comedy that's perfect for fans of Aykroyd's brand of humor. It's not deep or particularly insightful, but it doesn't need to be - it's just a good time at the movies. If you're looking for a lighthearted escape that's sure to make you laugh, then give The Couch Trip a try.
The Couch Trip is a 1988 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 37 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.8.