A Family Thanksgiving movie review


When it’s too early in the year to show crappy original made for TV Christmas movies, what’s Hallmark Channel to do?  Take one of their carbon copy Christmas movies and do a find & replace and bring you A Family Thanksgiving.  

This lazily written It’s a Wonderful Life ripoff (with a dash of Scrooged at the beginning for good measure) may appeal to the lowest common denominator, but Daphne Zuniga (Princess Vespa in Spaceballs and Jo on Melrose Place) pushes, prys and drags this movie to the finish line by sheer force of will.

This story has ZERO surprises – unless you’re seven years old and have no experience or have never seen any Christmas movies.  Worse than that, there’s a lot of logic problems in an effort to keep the main character identifiable with the audience while being at odds with the other characters.  For example, Zuniga’s character is about to make partner at her law firm which, as any earthing knows, is a big deal.  Lawyers want to make partner.  Everyone knows this… except the characters in this movie.  When you couple the fact that the supporting characters are space aliens with the fact that they don’t know it’s unreasonable to call someone the afternoon before thanksgiving and ask them to make a pie, you, as a member of the audience, tend to yell at your hero, “Don’t change!  F@ck them!  You’re better off at work!”  So while you’re rooting for the hero, you’re actually rooting against the plot, which kinda makes you want to boo at the end of the flick.

But, I have to admit, the movie is directed, edited and performed so well that it’s an easy watch.  Sure, there is absolutely nothing new in this Christmas (cough cough), I mean Thanksgiving movie, but that little girl is maybe the cutest kid I’ve ever seen.  She steals every moment and everyone deals with her improve (“Don’t kiss me!”) as though they knew it was coming.  Faye Dunaway is in a bit over her head (in an admittedly difficult role), but everybody else really delivers.  This helps a lot; you can enjoy the simplest thing you’ve experienced a million times if it’s done well.

That’s as sold a recommendation as you’re going to get out of me.  A Family Thanksgiving is a warmed over retread, but it’s not without its charm.

About Jamie Insalaco

Jamie Insalaco is the author of CreativeJamie.com, BomberBanter.com and editor in chief of ComicBookClog.com

Posted on November 25, 2015, in christmas blog posts, movie review, tv review and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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