Psychokinesis is a subject that can usually be relied upon to create some spectacular effects on screen, and as a result, occasionally the story and characters become subordinated. No so with Patrick, which is more a study in character reactions.
The denominative Patrick is introduced as a matricide who, after having done away with mom and her lover, is next seen in the intensive care section in a state of chronic, advanced – and, we’re told – irreversible catatonic reaction: ‘160 pounds of limp meat hanging off a comatosed brain’, says Dr Roget (Robert Helpmann).
Kathy Jacquard (Susan Penhaligon) is a recently estranged wife who returns to nursing to support herself. At Roget’s clinic, as the newest member of the staff, she’s given Patrick to watch over.
The patient falls in love with his nurse, which would be okay if he only had tonsillitis and was normal: Patrick is polyplegic and homicidal and possessed of this really terrific sixth sense which he uses spitefully.
The inert (and uncredited) lead, with help from Richard Franklin’s shrewd direction, creates an incredible menace while the thesps surrounding him go through their action.