CHICAGO Thanksgiving can be an opportunity to create picture-perfect family photos. However, it could also be an opportunity to explore, well complex family dynamics as well. There’s nothing better than a great film to help the best of it. The dramedies know the importance of family and its own challenges and ups. Plus, the best part is they’re streaming (for no cost!) on Tubi.
The Pieces of the month of April (2003)
Desiring to break out of the “Dawson’s Creek” mold, Katie Holmes took on the role of the alternate-girl April Burns in this indie drama, which is set, fittingly enough, on the day of Thanksgiving as well as on the day itself. With the family mother, Joy ( Patricia Clarkson), suffering from breast cancer, April sets out to build an enjoyable family moment by inviting the dysfunctional Burns family to her tiny New York City apartment for Thanksgiving.
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After discovering that her oven is damaged, April has to rope across her entire apartment to put together the dinner. While tensions and tempers rise to an extreme point when the Burns bemoan April’s chaotic behaviors, in the final analysis, “Pieces of April” is a delightful celebration of imperfect family interactions.
Family Stone (2005) Family Stone (2005)
The result when an overly strict Manhattan business executive gets to meet her boyfriend’s close-knit bohemian clan? There are fireworks, of course. There’s also plenty of humor. In the last sixteen years, “The Family Stone” has become an iconic Christmas movie, and with excellent reasons.
The film understands that making it through tough times can make to be more grateful for the good times. With an ensemble cast including Diane Keaton, Sarah Jessica Parker, Dermot Mulroney, Claire Danes, Luke Wilson, and a charmingly disheveled and unassuming Rachel McAdams, it’s likely to meet at least one who you can relate to in this film about settling into the crowd, standing out and becoming a part of the family.
Our Family Wedding (2010)
The only thing that is more difficult than the family holidays is weddings. Director/writer Rick Famuyiwa places the issue at the forefront of this charming, hilarious romantic comedy. Tensions arise when do-gooders Lucia Ramirez (America Ferrera) and Marcus Boyd (Lance Gross) announce their surprise engagement–especially because their families didn’t even know they were dating.
The situation only gets more awkward after it turns out Marcus’ father, Brad ( Forest Whitaker), and Lucia’s father, Miguel ( Carlos Mencia), were just about to be fighting earlier in the day. A rare love story of interracial couples which doesn’t have a white cast, “Our Family Wedding” examines the consequences that occur when family traditions are shattered and families are mixed, all in the desire to love. The couple Lucia and Marcus are constantly reminded: “Our marriage, their wedding.”
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
The positive energy of the universe fuels this dysfunctional family drama directed by the acclaimed David O. Russell. Recently discharged from the mental hospital where he was receiving treatment for bipolar disorder, 30-something Pat Solitano Jr. ( Bradley Cooper) is forced to return to his home from childhood.
His father and mother, Robert De Niro and Jacki Weaver are trying to guide him away from obsessing about his ex-wife. Although Pat does not always listen to the two, he will listen to the troubled widow Tiffany Maxwell ( Jennifer Lawrence), and she is a forceful and persuasive influencer who encourages him to become her partner in the local dance competition.
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This unsettling but ultimately heartwarming comedy has been nominated eight times for Academy Awards and won Lawrence the Best Actress Oscar. There are a lot of conflicting family feuds and a major subplot that involves the Philadelphia Eagles, so it makes the perfect Thanksgiving film.
Rated R. The film runs 122 minutes. Director: David O. Russell. Also, Chris Tucker, Anupam Kher, Julia Stiles, Shea Whigham, and John Ortiz.
The Kids Are All Right (2010)
Things seem to be all good for the happy couple Nic ( Annette Bening) and Jules Allgood ( Julianne Moore), as well as their two children, Laser ( Josh Hutcherson) and Joni ( Mia Wasikowska). However, as Joni is 18 years old and chooses to make contact with the donor of her sperm, who made their family possible, things quickly become more complicated. After a few phone calls All goods are presented to Paul Hatfield ( Mark Ruffalo) Paul Hatfield, a cyclist, organic, food-loving restaurant owner who is swept in their world like a spirited tornado. Through its smooth duration, this critically acclaimed comedy-drama nominated for an Oscar examines the meaning of family and how the people we don’t know affect our lives.
Beyond The Lights (2014)
“Beyond the Lightings” concerns a range of things, including creative identity and mental health and sexism within the musical industry, and romantic partnerships. It also explores the complicated relationship between mother and daughter. Minnie Driver’s Macy Jean is the most famous stage mother. For her, second place is the best place to be a loser.
Therefore, she’s led her talented daughters Noni ( Gugu Mbatha-Raw) into the world of a singer nearing superstardom. While Noni struggles with her own pressure of being famous as well as an unrequited love story with an officer of the police force But she must also learn to let go of the influence of her mother and discover what she is and what she wants to be. The achingly beautiful, coming-of-age love story is a celebration of having limits without letting others dictate to you, even the people who raised you.
The writer’s bio: Caroline Siede is a television and film critic in Chicago in the United States, where the cold doesn’t bother her at all. A participant in the Chicago Film Critics Association, she adores dissecting the genre of romantic comedy, one film at a time in her weekly column called When Romance Met Comedy at The A.V. Club. She is also the co-host of the movie podcast Role Calling and is a frequent contributor to pop culture via Twitter (@carolinesiede).
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