487 voters

Powerful Movies About Sick & Dying Children

Updated January 12, 2021 1.2k votes 487 voters 64.4k views29 items

There's nothing more tragic than a child with cancer dying before they've had a chance to experience all that life has to offer. The top death of a child movies feature tear-jerking storylines about parents coping with unimaginable tragedy. This is a list of the greatest sick child movies including everything from Ordinary People to My Sister's Keeper to Lorenzo's Oil.

What films will you find on this list of the best movies about dying children? Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is another good film about sick and dying kids. Be sure that you're in the mood to watch a sad movie whenever you press play on one these movies about kids with cancer and other illnesses.

Which movie about the death of a child do you think deserves the top spot on this list? Give your favorites a thumbs up and please add any good films that are missing.

  • 1

    My Sister's Keeper

    Cameron Diaz, Alec Baldwin

    A young girl fights for medical emancipation from her parents who until now relied on their youngest child's bone marrow to keep their leukemia-stricken older daughter alive.

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  • 2

    The Fault in Our Stars

    Shailene Woodley, Willem Dafoe

    Two teenage cancer patients take a life-affirming journey to visit a reclusive author in Amsterdam, based on the best-selling novel by John Green.


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  • 3

    Five Feet Apart

    Cole Sprouse, Haley Lu Richardson

    A pair of teenagers with cystic fibrosis meet in a hospital and fall in love, though their disease means they must avoid close physical contact.

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  • 4

    A Walk To Remember

    Shane West, Mandy Moore

    Adapted from the Nicholas Sparks novel, a rebellious teenage love story stops in its tracks when Jamie (Mandy Moore) is diagnosed with leukemia. 

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  • 5

    The Lovely Bones

    Rachel Weisz, Mark Wahlberg

    A young girl who has been murdered watches over her family - and her killer - from purgatory, weighing a desire for vengeance against a desire for her family to heal.

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  • 6

    John Q

    Denzel Washington, Robert Duvall

    John Quincy Archibald (Denzel Washington) takes a hospital emergency room hostage after his insurance refuses to cover his son's heart transplant.

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  • 7

    Me And Earl And The Dying Girl

    Thomas Mann, RJ Cyler

    Based on the critically-acclaimed novel by Jesse Andrews, a snarky high schooler and his best friend find their outlook forever altered after befriending a classmate who has just been diagnosed with cancer.

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  • 8

    The Cure

    Annabella Sciorra, Brad Renfro

    An eleven-year-old boy with AIDS and his new friend vow to find a cure for HIV together.

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  • 9

    Everything, Everything

    Amandla Stenberg, Nick Robinson

    A teenager who's spent her whole life confined to her home due to an autoimmune disorder falls for the boy next door.

  • 10

    Lorenzo's Oil

    Susan Sarandon, Nick Nolte

    A boy develops a disease so rare that nobody knows a cure, so his father decides to learn all about it and try to cure the disease himself.

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  • 11


    Cher, Laura Dern

    A teenager with a terminal skull deformity and his biker gang mother attempt to enjoy a normal life and all its joys under the circumstances.

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  • 12

    If I Stay

    Chloë Grace Moretz, Mireille Enos

    After a car accident puts a young woman in a coma and takes her to an out-of-body world, she must decide whether to wake up and live a life much different than she imagined.

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  • 13

    Bridge to Terabithia

    Zooey Deschanel, Josh Hutchersonm

    A preteen's life turns upside down when he befriends the new girl in school and they imagine a whole new fantasy world to escape their tragic reality.

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  • 14


    Mia Wasikowska, Jane Adams

    A terminally ill teenage girl falls for a boy who likes to attend funerals and is imaginary friends with the ghost of a Japanese kamikaze pilot from WWII.

  • 15


    Sarah Paulson, Kiera Allen

    A homeschooled teenager with numerous illnesses begins to suspect her mother is keeping a dark secret from her.

  • 16

    The Broken Circle Breakdown

    Veerle Baetens, Johan Heldenbergh

    Two polar opposite lovers fall for each other, but when the daughter becomes seriously ill, their differences put their love on trial.

  • 17

    Rabbit Hole

    Nicole Kidman, Sandra Oh

    The life of a happy couple plunges down a rabbit hole of pain after their young son dies in an accident.


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  • 18

    Now Is Good

    Dakota Fanning, Kaya Scodelario

    A teenager dying of leukemia makes a bucket list of things she would like to do before passing away. At the top of the list is losing her virginity.

  • 19

    Dying Young

    Julia Roberts, Ellen Burstyn

    Answering a newspaper ad for a "hot female" to care for a young man dying of leukemia, Hilary (Julia Roberts) joins the intelligent son of a wealthy family in the fight for his life.

  • 20

    Little Women

    Saoirse Ronan, Laura Dern

    Four young women, each determined to live life on her own terms, make their unique way in the world, until one develops a devastating illness that brings the family back together.​


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  • 21


    Ben Mendelsohn, Essie Davis

    A seriously ill teenager falls in love with a drug dealer becoming her conservative parents worst nightmare.

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  • 22

    The Sweet Hereafter

    Ian Holm, Sarah Polley

    When a bus crash in a small town kills a dozen children, the lone survivor, a paralyzed 15-year-old boy suffering to recover must testify that the accident is a result of the town's negligence.

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  • 23

    The World of Kanako

    Kōji Yakusho, Miki Nakatani

    A former detective searching for his missing daughter discovers her mysterious secret life as he follows her trail into the world of Kanako (Nana Komatsu).

  • 24


    Carme Elias, Jordi Dauder

    The young daughter of sectarian religious fanatics faces a deadly illness soon after falling in love for the first time.

  • 25

    Here on Earth

    Josh Hartnett, Leelee Sobieski

    A girl diagnosed with bone cancer is caught in a love triangle between her longtime crush and the rich jock she just met.