My Old Addiction

Movie Reviews By Bil Antoniou

Heaven Can Wait (1978)


(out of 5)

Lightweight romantic comedy stars  (who also co-wrote, co-directed and co-produced with ) as a football hero who dies young and is told by the man upstairs (played by a deliciously smarmy ) that he’s come to heaven too early. He must be returned to earth in human form, but his original body is no longer available and therefore his soul must be given to someone else’s physical being; celestial employees find the perfect candidate in a rich, aging millionaire whose wife () and accountant have just murdered him. Imagine the conspirators’ surprise when the old guy comes back from the grave! The hilarity turns to serious romance when Beatty meets the lovely  and needs to find a way to become himself again and stick around for good. Beatty gives a dependable performance, while Cannon steals all her scenes as the mentally unstable murderess. The entire project hasn’t aged so well over the years (it was a Best Picture nominee in its year, while as now just seems the average romantic comedy), but it’s good fun to watch big stars in something so enjoyably breezy. Remade from the 1941 film Here Comes Mr. Jordan (it has no relation to Ernst Lubistch’s Heaven Can Wait) and remade again decades later as Down To Earth starring Chris Rock.

Paramount Pictures

USA, 1978

Directed by ,

Screenplay by Warren Beatty, , based on the play by

Cinematography by

Produced by Warren Beatty

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by ,

Academy Awards 1978

Golden Globe Awards 1978

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