Team RFC’s Thanksgiving Film Picks
It’s almost Thanksgiving and whether you’re hanging with friends, family or riding it out alone, at some point you’ll probably need a good 90 minutes of feel-good film action.
Whether they’re mishap-fuelled road trips or turkey tearjerkers, we sat down and went through some hits and misses to come up with a definitive list of our favourites, all centred around that traditional day of thanks. Here’s the top 10:
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
A classic comedy following feuding strangers as control freak, Neal (Steve Martin) and our favourite curtain ring salesman, Del (John Candy) repeatedly fail in their attempts to get home in time for Thanksgiving. After re-routed flights, freak blizzards, broken down trains, robberies, burned out cars and an absolute smasher of a monologue from Del (his ‘I like me’ speech gives us the feels every time) they both overcome their differences and end up celebrating Thanksgiving together.
Pieces of April
This teen film favourite follows Katie Holmes as April, the black sheep of her family, as she decides to host Thanksgiving in her hovel of a NYC apartment when she finds out that her mother has terminal cancer. With snarky relatives aplenty, a turkey taken hostage and an eventual feast of pizza, this is a great watch for those angsty Thanksgiving vibes.
This Disney film isn’t just a cartoon classic about a girl that takes life changing advice from a tree; it’s a documentation of the first colonists to claim land from the Indians and how they all worked together to survive the winter. It’s also the beginning of a love story between Pocahontas and John Smith, and is jam-packed with life lessons on acceptance, family and the value of singing songs to willow trees in order to find a boyfriend. Because the Native Americans didn’t have Tinder.
The Blind Side
This film is based on the true events of NFL’s Michael Oher and his journey from homeless American football prodigy to a huge sports star. Starring Sandra Bullock as the Southern mother who takes him in, the film’s most memorable moment is when the family are eating Thanksgiving dinner in front of the TV, minus Oher who chooses to sit at the dining table. Eventually, the rest of the family joins him, bringing them all closer together and giving us all a righteous kick in the feels. No, YOU’RE crying.
A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
Technically not a film, this 24 minute long classic is essential Thanksgiving viewing so we’re keeping it anyway. Inspiring ‘Friendsgiving’, Peppermint Patty invites herself over to Chuck’s for dinner only to slate his culinary skills – it’s fair really, he serves toast FFS. Marcie then reminds her that the holiday is about being with those you love, not turkey and everyone’s hearts are suitably warmed.
Not just a film about a small-town boxer’s fight with a world heavyweight champ, Rocky is also perfect Thanksgiving fodder, y’know, eventually. When Rocky’s crush Adrian’s brother straight up f*cks the whole day by chucking her turkey out the back door, Rocky turns the ruined holiday into a dreamy date and instead takes Adrian to a skating rink.
Addams Family Values
Thought that the first Thanksgiving came together because them lovely Pilgrims invited the Native Americans over for dinner to celebrate their banging harvest? Wrong. It’s thought that the natives actually dropped by the feast to see what all the noise was about seeing as it was actually on their land and all that. So when Wednesday Addams’ summer camp’s attempts to show the nicer version of events in a play, Wednesday was having none of it and called major bullshit on their storyline, deciding instead to give them one hell of a dose of Addams reality.
Miracle on 34th Street
This Christmas film kicks off as Santa gets fired before the Thanksgiving Parade for being drunk so we’re riding on a technicality that this is also perfect Thanksgiving viewing for those who want an easy holiday transition. Whether you’ve got the classic 1947 original or fancy the ‘94 remake, this is an all-round favourite that will keep the whole family happy, post-turkey feasting. We’re showing this at the brand new Winter Film Club! Get your tickets here.
You’ve Got Mail
This film is essential rom-com viewing, whatever time of year, but the ‘cash only line’ scene is a favourite as Meg Ryan’s Kathleen finds herself without cash at the supermarket on a busy Thanksgiving day. Joe (Tom Hanks), her business enemy/mystery online lover, happens to spot her and charms his way into her heart as he pays for her stuff. #Hanksgiving
Taking the award for both best and worst puntastic film title ever, this film – whose tagline was ‘Gobble Gobble, Motherf*cker’ – is about a homicidal turkey that goes on a killing spree and is nothing short of absolutely awful. And that’s why you have to watch it.