Heaven Can Wait

1978 PG 1h 41m DVD

Heaven Can Wait

1978 PG 1h 41m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
When an angel prematurely takes quarterback Joe Pendleton's soul to heaven after an accident, he must be sent back to earth. With his remains cremated, Joe is put into the body of a multimillionaire whose wife and assistant have just poisoned him.
Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, James Mason, Jack Warden, Dyan Cannon, Charles Grodin, Buck Henry, Vincent Gardenia, Hamilton Camp, Arthur Malet, Stephanie Faracy
Warren Beatty, Buck Henry
Widescreen 1.85:1
French: Dolby Digital Mono, English: Dolby Digital Mono
PG - Some material may not be suitable for children. Parents urged to give parental guidance. May contain some material parents might not like for their young children.
age 12+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 12+
age 12+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that Heaven Can Wait, an award-winning romantic comedy from 1978, deals with a nonreligious, fantasy afterlife where mistakes are made and worthy characters get do-overs. A timeless story about love, redemption, football, and shady business deals, the movie is contemporary in all but the most mundane details (no cell phones, no Internet, no company bailouts). Action sequences include some brutal football practice scenes as members of the LA Rams attempt to smash an interloper, a scene in which a rifle is used to shoot a central character, and the sounds of a fatal car accident that occurs off camera. Infidelity plays an important part in the story, and there is occasional profanity ("ass," "s--t," "hell," "son of a bitch," and "bastard"). Characters engage in social drinking, with one woman using alcohol to calm her anxiety. The central character's playful innocence and integrity, as well as identity switches and the charm of the attending love story, make this film ideal for mature tweens and teens. Great for a family movie night.

Sexual Content

Infidelity is core story element. Couple shown in bed in several scenes. One loving kiss. One woman wears revealing clothing.


Several scenes show hard-hitting football practice, games. Comic character wielding long-range rifle shoots a man.


Occasional profanity: "son of a bitch," "s--t," "ass," "bastard," "goddamn," "crap," "hello." One ethnic slur: "Arab."

Social Behavior

Values promoted: honesty, integrity, and determination. Good deeds are rewarded; evil is punished. Fairy tale outcome: True love and unconditional friendship will transcend all challenges.


Coca-Cola, Riddell helmets. Story features the Los Angeles Rams.

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Social drinking (wine, champagne). One character frequently requests a drink. Cigar smoking.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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