Is 'Heaven Sent' A True Story? The Lifetime Movie Brings Christmas Miracles To Life
'Tis the season for TV networks to air some delightfully cheesy movies bursting with holiday cheer. Lifetime is just one of the destinations where you'll be able to find the cinematic equivalent of walking in a winter wonderland. The network will be helping you get into the holiday spirit well before Christmas rolls around with Heaven Sent, its Saturday night movie premiere debuting on Dec. 3 at 8 p.m. ET. So what are the chances that Heaven Sent is based on a true story and will be extra-inspiring to audiences this holiday season?
Well, I'd say pretty slim. There's nothing in Heaven Sent's synopsis that makes it seem like it has any basis in real-life events, such as a mention of "based on a true story" or something like that. Movies that are based on true stories tend to denote that sort of thing. And when you read Heaven Sent's synopsis below via the movie's page on Lifetime's website, it seems hard to believe that this film would be based on a true story:
"It's Christmastime as hopelessly romantic artist Billy Taylor and a sharp beautiful businesswoman Maire are coming to the end of their nine year marriage. Billy's fight for Maire to stay after their heart-wrenching loss is all but over. Until... their silent pleas summon an answer in the form of a mischievous little miracle--an eight-year-old runaway from heaven who takes it upon herself to re-kindle the once intimate friendship and romance by any means necessary."
And when you watch the trailer for Heaven Sent below, you'll see that that "eight-year-old runaway from heaven" (Mallory James Mahoney) isn't just a girl but an angel with wings and the whole shebang. Oh, and Billy and Maire are the only people who can see her, except for Ernie Hudson's character Donatello, for some reason, who also seems to be a regular human.
Though it doesn't look like Heaven Sent was inspired by any real stories, it does make me think of those reports about children who say they've been to Heaven and then live to tell the tale that you see in the news every so often. One of the most recent of those stories to captivate America was that of Colton Burpo, who began describing meetings with Jesus and deceased family members after undergoing emergency appendectomy surgery when he was 3 years old, TheBlaze described in April 2014. Burpo's story is chronicled in the book and movie Heaven Is for Real.
Of course, your thoughts on whether or not something like what happens in Heaven Sent could actually occur in real life depends on if you believe in miracles or not, which probably depends on a lot of factors, including your faith, upbringing, and life experiences. Since a "Christmas miracle" is a thing that exists in our popular lexicon today, people tend to believe in these seemingly inexplicably wonderful moments even more during this time of year. It seems to add to the magic of the holidays, you know? So you'll find no shortage of miracles in other Christmas movies this holiday season. Heck, the word "miracle" alone is found in a ton of Christmas movies of varying quality, from Miracle on 34th Street to A Christmas Miracle to A Season of Miracles.
But if after watching Heaven Sent you want some more movie angels to be a part of your holiday festivities, you obviously needn't look any further than one of the greatest Christmas movies of all time, It's a Wonderful Life. As you probably know from this holiday classic, Clarence, Angel Second Class (Henry Travers), guides main protagonist George Bailey (James Stewart) through an alternate reality as if he had never been born. Clarence doesn't have wings, but it's revealed that he picks up a pair by the end of the movie as George realizes just how wonderful his life is with his family and the Bedford Falls community. "Every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings," after all.
So all in all, Heaven Sent may not teach you about a true story, but it's sure to be a decent start to all of the holiday movies you know you're going to watch all month long.
Image: Brian Nolan/Lifetime