Parents' Guide to

A Little Bit of Heaven

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Bizarre combo of terminal cancer weepy and sexy romcom.

Movie PG-13 2012 90 minutes
A Little Bit of Heaven Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 1 parent review

age 15+


I'm only 15 minutes into this film and already I see a problem. I have no idea why Marley is hallucinating or dying or whatever during her colonoscopy. She's under conscious sedation, that's how it's done, and Versed (midazolam) is the drug of choice. There's no reason for her to be waking up when it's over because she was never asleep to begin with. This just doesn't happen. I've assisted at colonoscopies. I'll watch the rest of this, but I'm already disappointed at the unnecessary and very unrealistic drama.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (1 ):

There's no denying that Hudson is adorable, and the New Orleans setting is magical, but those are the only positives. This syrupy end-of-life drama is a strangely off-putting combination of overly-sentimental "seize the day" messages and a traditional romantic comedy. Terminal cancer patient falls for her hunky doctor -- talk about a bizarre meet-cute. While there are snippets of the story that work (Peter Dinklage is hilarious as a male escort in a brief sequence), the majority of A LITTLE BIT OF HEAVEN is just confusing and cringe inducing.

It's not that the conflation of love and death is anything new. Plenty of movies combine the theme of finding or securing love and facing the end of life, but there's nothing particularly romantic about Marley and Julian's relationship. The life lessons she imparts are extremely clichéd -- carpe diem, tell people you love them, don't close yourself off to love, even if it's short-lived -- and at the very end, even the prolonged death vigil isn't the tear-jerker you'd expect from the genre. But if you love Hudson enough, you might just enjoy the sight of her smiling and dancing her charming self to heaven.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: May 4, 2012
  • On DVD or streaming: June 12, 2012
  • Cast: Gael Garcia Bernal , Kate Hudson , Lucy Punch
  • Director: Nicole Kassell
  • Inclusion Information: Female directors, Latino actors, Female actors
  • Studio: DreamWorks
  • Genre: Drama
  • Run time: 90 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13
  • MPAA explanation: sexual content, including crude references, and language
  • Last updated: September 26, 2022

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