A young woman struggles to prepare for a Thanksgiving visit from her estranged family.
I’m happy that I found the screenshot you see above. The way this movie was advertised, you’ll see images of a smirking, happy-go-lucky Katie Holmes, alternatively colored hair, pictures in hand. That’s not the tone of the film at all. The character she plays is a young woman who is determined to make Thanksgiving with her estranged family a good one, no matter what difficulties she encounters along the way. She doesn’t get overly frantic, she just tries to find solutions. This character isn’t too happy, nor is she too stressed. She’s dealing with it, even though at times it seems like not everything is going to work out… and from my recollection, it doesn’t end up perfectly. But the story is rich, the characters are well-written, and it’s an enjoyable movie in the way that it’s relatable. You want to root for this girl, but she doesn’t play it in a way where you feel forced to root for her. It’s a great Thanksgiving time film in the way that Thanksgiving is the type of holiday that most people look forward to, even though it’s not necessarily a perfect day for most people.
Rating: 7.1 out of 10
The Cast: The film doesn’t have any A-Listers in the cast, other than Katie Holmes, depending on how you’d classify her, but there’s some talent involved that help make it an enjoyable film. Say what you will about Katie Holmes, she’s really good in this film, to the degree that I’d say if you want to form an opinion on her, you really should check out Pieces Of April.
Patricia Clarkson & Oliver Platt – You know what to expect from these seasoned actors. Probably not a “nomination-worthy” performance, but an enjoyable one
John Gallagher Jr & Alison Pill – Fun to see them share a last name in this film, given their roles on NEWSROOM
The Building Tenants – The other people who live in April’s building really add something. They’re not what you might expect. The movie has a very realistic feel to it, and these characters – who seem very genuine – have a lot to do with that.
To Whom Would I Recommend It? Probably anyone. I don’t want to hype it up too much, because it’s not a GREAT movie, but it’s one that you can sit back and appreciate if you’re in the right mood at the right time of year. Watching this film in May or June probably wouldn’t get the right feel. November, December, January or maybe even February, it works very nicely.