A Little Bit of Heaven 2011 ½

Here is the lesson from A Little Bit of Heaven: Colon cancer is the best thing that can happen to anyone.

Before cancer, Marley is a shallow, vain person who sleeps with anyone, doesn't get along with her parents, doesn't believe in love. With colon cancer, Marley now has a good looking Mexican Jewish (yes, they actually exist) doctor (yes, he is her doctor, who looks like Gael Garcia Bernal, and no, I don't think it's ethical) falling for her and she loves him. She makes peace with her parents (played by Kathy Bates and Treat Williams, who should be playing Newt Gringrich in a TV movie). She has new friends including a dwarf male gigolo played by Peter Dinklage (the movie is called A Little Bit of Heaven for a reason). She reconciles her feelings with her current friends (played by Rosemarie DeWitt, Lucy Punch, Romany Malco). Marley also gets to talk to God who is Whoopi Goldberg (Marley actually project God as Whoopi Goldberg, anyone in real life actually think like that???) In short, Marley just stop short of solving world hunger, while still looking like Kate Hudson (her late scenes though do have her WITHOUT make up, I guess she has to draw the line somewhere).

The amazing thing about this movie is how unreal these characters and situations are and yet it tries to earn real emotions from the audience. This is absolutely the worst movie I have seen in the last 3 years or so.


  • I wasn't planning on seeing this, but on some totally sick brain-dead night I might have. Thanks for the heads-up. Will avoid like the plague.

  • I usually don't get offended by movies, especially rom-com. But this one actually offends me, quite an accomplishment here.

  • (Rosemarie DeWitt plays her sister.)

    I can't disagree with anything you've written. What I found particularly curious was just how offputtingly abrasive the pre-diagnosis Marley came across, which consequently makes it difficult to ever become emotionally invested in her plight. I'm not sure whether the filmmakers were oblivious as to just how unpalatable their protagonist plays on screen, or if they overestimated the ability of Kate Hudson's typical sunny screen persona to make her charmless character more endearing than she actually is.

  • Her sister really? Yes, the kid called Marley aunt. Did DeWitt have a scene with the parents (I am trying to block this film out of my mind)?

    I think the filmmakers want to make this a journey where she learns something from cancer and become a better person. So they make her as abrasive as possible before the diagnosis. Of course the issue then become the audience will never buy her as a sympathetic character...

    I wonder what Kate Hudson is thinking when she read this role. She has made some of the worst choices ever since Almost Famous. She actually manage to choose the wrong 'sick person' script, I think that actually takes some talent to do.

  • Sorry, I believe I was incorrect on DeWitt's character -- mea culpa. (I must still have My Sister's Sister on the brain.)

    I agree that this film follows the traditional redemptive arc, which can certainly work when the character is initially flawed but sympathetic. In this case, I think they believed Hudson's performance of Marley would come across as blitheful rather than self-absorbed and alienating

    I've unintentionally seen almost everything Hudson's done, and I'm with you that this is right down there alongside Bride Wars and Fool's Gold in the nadir of her filmography. The Variety review for this one suggests that the project may have been conceived as be heavier on the cancer plot, thereby piquing Hudson's interest as a venue to exercise her dramatic chops.

  • I haven't seen Brides War, but did check out Fool's Gold. She couldn't even pick a good Rom-Com. At least Drew Barrymore knows how to pick decent ones. I still think Kate Hudson is a better actress than the material she chooses.

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