What Planet Are You From? (2000)



Critic Consensus: Though What Planet Are You From? has some laughs, it's too inconsistent and bland for critics to give it their recommendations.

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Movie Info

Garry Shandling makes his big-screen debut as a leading man in this sci-fi romantic comedy. Harold (Shandling) is an alien from another galaxy sent to Earth on a vital mission: in order to ensure that his civilization will prevail, Harold must impregnate an Earth woman. But he discovers that this is more easily said than done, as he quickly gets a crash course in the arcane rituals of the human courtship process. What's worse, just when Harold thinks he's making progress in Earthbound seduction, he discovers that the males of his planet don't physically interface properly with women on Earth, so he is issued a variety of bizarre gadgets to complete his assignment. Mike Nichols directed What Planet Are You From?, which also features a top-notch supporting cast, including Annette Bening, John Goodman, Ben Kingsley, and Camryn Manheim.
R (for sexuality and language)
Comedy , Horror , Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

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Garry Shandling
as Harold Anderson
John Goodman
as Roland Jones
Greg Kinnear
as Perry Gordon
Ben Kingsley
as Graydon
Judy Greer
as Rebecca
Danny Zorn
as Randy
Richard Jenkins
as Don Fisk
Linda Fiorentino
as Helen Gordon
Nora Dunn
as Madeline
Cricky Long
as Janice
Jane Lynch
as Doreen
Richard Minchenberg
as Dr. Weitzman
Drinda La Lumia
as Drunken Lady
Marjorie Lovett
as Neighbor Woman
Bil Dwyer
as Husband
Jane Morris
as Charity Woman
Michael Dempsey
as Baggage Handler
Brian Markinson
as Co-Pilot
Octavia Spencer
as Baby Nurse
Ana Mercedes
as Older Nurse
Samantha Smith
as Flight Attendant
Tom Dahlgren
as Minister
Tammy Tavares
as Hologram Woman
Wade Williams
as Planet Man
Phill Lewis
as Other MD
Jack Sydow
as Minister
Rick Hoffman
as Doctor
Tom Dorfmeister
as Heavy Man
Neil Machlis
as Dr. Tom
Mike Gottfried
as Football Announcer
Dr. Jerry Punch
as Football Announcer
Janeane Garofalo
as Nervous Woman (uncredited)
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Critic Reviews for What Planet Are You From?

All Critics (77) | Top Critics (23)

Shandling and director Mike Nichols find a funny new way of packaging the old truth in What Planet Are You From?

December 31, 1999
Top Critic

Bening, even in a formula role like this one, is so lovable she actually makes you believe that she'd melt the resolve of a technocratic space visitor.

Full Review… | December 31, 1999
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic


December 31, 1999
Boston Globe
Top Critic

Consistently humorous, often downright funny.

December 31, 1999
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic

A testicle-tweaking satire on men trying to get in touch with feelings most of them didn't know they had.

December 31, 1999
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Easily the funniest movie of the year.

December 31, 1999
New York Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for What Planet Are You From?

What Planet Are YouFrom? is not about the destruction of earth nor about the inane sex comedy a number of reviewers labeled/described it. The film explores the nature of male/female relationship quite well. Questions like: How do we meet each other? What are the female motives for entering the courtship dance? The female reasons? Why is communication between the sexes so difficult? What is about the birth of a child that can heal the saddest relationships? And on and on. The film doesn't pretend to offer much in the way of answers to these questions, but that's okay. It is enough that it simply raises them. As a science fiction flick, this is not much of a close encounter picture. But as a human drama packed with laughs, it's quite good. Near the end of the film, the audience is shown an exterior shot of Gary Shandling's planet for the first time. It is a Metropolis-like setting and is completely gray. This bit of symbolism is akin to the drabness of male existence without female companionship--towering and impressive as an edifice, but cold and colourless and empty as well.

Cinema Films
Cinema Films

Super Reviewer


I watched this movie really wasted, so I'm not sure if this review is really all that fair. From what I remember there are some great, funny scenes from a really talented cast. Kinnear has some really funny asshole moments and John Goodman seems to make anything work. Annette Bening is the definition of a cougar and really brings a real levity to a lot of really stupid situations. The film is cute and inventive at the opening, but then gets bogged down by some really lame stuff. Shandling is funny, but there is this whole running away from the bad guys scene which really turned the movie into a stupid chase film in an already reaching plot. Either way, not terrible and a good way to pass the time while you are waiting for everyone to pass out so you can fall asleep on the couch.

Tim Sigur
Tim Sigur

Super Reviewer


I can't believe Mike "The Graduate" Nichols directed THIS.

Michael S
Michael S

Super Reviewer

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