Synopsis by Karl Williams
In the same year that a hit cable television series, The Sopranos, successfully mined the same premise, this comedy about a mobster seeking advice from a psychiatrist was a box office winner for director Harold Ramis. Billy Crystal stars as Dr. Ben Sobel, a New York shrink who's becoming a little bored with his upscale but neurotic clientele. Into Sobel's practice comes a guy with legitimate problems, Mafia kingpin Paul Viti (Robert DeNiro), a godfather who is being reduced to tears and panic attacks by stress and his guilt over his beloved father's assassination. Intimidated but also fascinated by Viti, Dr. Sobel becomes frustrated when his mob boss patient becomes a full-time occupation, as Viti summons the psychiatrist for his professional help at all hours and in all places, even including the doctor's Florida wedding to TV reporter Laura MacNamara (Lisa Kudrow). In the meantime, a power struggle is brewing with Viti's long-time rival Primo Sidone (Chazz Palminteri), but Viti begins employing the feel-good self-help jargon and techniques he's learned from Dr. Sobel to keep his enemy off balance. Just as the therapist and his powerful patient are making breakthroughs, the FBI attempts to persuade Sobel that Viti is going to have him murdered, leading to a nearly lethal misunderstanding.
gangster, anxiety, psychiatry, rival, therapist, crime-lord, wedding