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9 Must-See Pregnancy Movies: Where Real Meets Ridiculous

What to Expect When You're Expecting 1 of 9

Several couples experience the ups and downs of pregnancy and more as they prepare for parenthood.


When It Delivers: Based on the ubiquitous pregnancy bible of the same name, the comedy accurately depicts many of joys and pains of pregnancy, from Elizabeth Banks' exhausted shop owner falling asleep at work in her first trimester to Cameron Diaz's fitness guru getting psyched about her newly enlarged chest.



When It's False Labor: Sure, some women have smoother labors than others, but when one seemingly painless sneeze is all takes for one character to get her baby out, that's pushing it.


She's Having a Baby 2 of 9

Newlyweds grapple with life in the suburbs, parental expectations and whether to have a baby in this comedy-drama.


When It Delivers:

After the husband and wife, played by Kevin Bacon and Elizabeth McGovern, ultimately decide to pursue parenthood in this movie, the sex turns joyless—a familiar gripe for many couples struggling to conceive. When McGovern's mom-to-be goes into labor, a complication leaves Bacon waiting and worrying in a convincing, emotional performance.


When It's False Labor:

Bacon's acting talents aside, some have panned the birth sequence, with McGovern's character being taken for an emergency caesarean section for a breech delivery, as melodramatic.
The Back-Up Plan 3 of 9

A single woman successfully pursues artificial insemination... right before meeting the man of her dreams in this breezy romantic comedy.


When It Delivers:

In this movie, Jennifer Lopez's pregnant pet store owner indulges in her cravings and laments the loss of her prepartum backside. She also loves sleeping with her body pillow, much to the dismay of her boyfriend, played by Alex O'Loughlin.


When It's False Labor:

Lopez's character joins a single mothers group that is largely comprised of cringe-worthy—if amusing—stereotypes.

Baby Mama 4 of 9

A successful executive hires a zany surrogate and then moves her into her home as the pregnancy progresses.


When It Delivers:

In this film, the would-be mom (Tina Fey) is zealous about babyproofing and reading up on childcare while the surrogate (Amy Poehler) is decidedly more carefree, happy to gorge herself on junk food and dye her hair, showcasing two very different approaches to baby prep.


When It's False Labor:

Suffice it to say that reality high-tails it out of there when an ultrasound picture of a squirrel proves the foundation for a major plot point.


Juno 5 of 9

A pregnant teenager builds a relationship with a childless couple looking to adopt.


When It Delivers:

It's a comedy, but Ellen Page's sharp-witted yet vulnerable character still experiences the stigma of teen pregnancy, with fellow high schoolers gawking at her "cautionary whale" of a body and her love interest asking someone else to prom.


When It's False Labor:

The title character seems to return to life as usual after the baby's birth and adoption, an ending that critics say is far too sunny and doesn't compare with the anguish teens often feel in such situations.


Knocked Up 6 of 9

An up-and-coming entertainment journalist and a scuzzy-chinned slacker begin an unlikely romance after a drunken dalliance results in pregnancy.


When It Delivers:

Katherine Heigl's reporter is understandably anxious about sharing her pregnancy news at work, throws hormonal tantrums like a pro, draws herself a bath to relax after contractions begin and copes with the fact that her first choice obstetrician is on vacation when it's time to deliver. The comedy doesn't shy away from showing a pivotal moment near the end—the baby's head crowning at birth.


When It's False Labor:

Heigl's character sees her sister's gynecologist for her first pregnancy appointment. During the exam, with Heigl's character in stirrups, the doctor remarks, "You do look a lot like your sister." Funny, but not something any real-life doc would ever say in that context... at least, we hope not!
Father of the Bride 2 7 of 9

A man grapples with a mid-life crisis and a double baby bonanza: both his daughter and wife are pregnant at the same time in this sequel to Father of the Bride.


When It Delivers:

Steve Martin, as the titular father, dotes on his wife (Diane Keaton) and daughter (Kimberly Williams-Paisley), making himself available for back-scratching and take-out food runs. Like many other first-time moms, Williams-Paisley's thinks she's in labor when she's not, learning she's had a false alarm only once she's at the hospital.


When It's False Labor:

A mother and daughter going into labor at the same time? That's some serious kismet. And more than a little hard to believe.


Nine Months 8 of 9

A child psychiatrist must change his self-indulgent ways after discovering his long-time girlfriend is pregnant.


When It Delivers:

Hugh Grant's father-to-be is convincingly teary-eyed at the sight of his in-utero son during an ultrasound, while Julianne Moore, as his girlfriend, is distracted by her baby's kicks at an especially inopportune moment.


When It's False Labor:

This comedy is clearly focused more on over-the-top humor than verisimilitude. Highlights include Robin Williams' Russian veterinarian-turned-obstetrician and a delivery room fist fight between Grant and a fellow father played by Tom Arnold.
Look Who's Talking 9 of 9

An unmarried new mom finds romance with the taxi driver who got her to the hospital while the baby offers his own amusing take on the situation.


When It Delivers:

Though most of the film deals with the aftermath of the baby's birth—and the relationship between characters played by Kirstie Alley and John Travolta—the opening sequence showing sperm racing to the ovum paints a vivid depiction of the biological basics of conception.


When It's False Labor:

The sperm talk. Enough said.
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