April Burns (Katie Holmes) has always been the black sheep of her family. Having a sordid past of deliberately starting kitchen fires and dating drug dealers, her family is leary about making the suburban trek to April's Lower East Side apartment for Thanksgiving dinner, especially April's mom, Joy (Patricia Clarkson), and older sister, Beth (Allison Pill). Joy is dying of cancer and this might be her last Thanksgiving. Joy has no happy memories of April and simply cannot go through another unpleasant experience with her. However Joy's husband (Oliver Platt) assures her that this will be a Thanksgiving to remember, as April has dumped the drug dealer boyfriend and is now with Bobby (Derek Luke). April and Bobby furiously prepare for their Thanksgiving guests, haphazardly prepping the turkey, cooking boxed stuffing and decorating their dumpy apartment with balloons and streamers. Bobby even has plans to buy some new threads for the happy occasion and has a special "quality men's clothes" hook-up. As soon as Bobby leaves, April discovers that her oven is not working. April must go door to door throughout her building, searching for reluctant neighbors (Sean Hayes) that will help with her plight. The clock is slowly ticking for April to deliver the perfect meal and the perfect memory.
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The review of this Movie prepared by Tara Dugan
Thanksgiving brings an alienated woman's family over for the big meal. April, the protagonist, left her suburban home when she was sixteen to escape the difficult relationship she had with her mother. She came to NYC, settled in a bad neighborhood, got involved with drugs, kicked the habit, got rid of her no-good-drug-dealing-boyfriend, and moved in with a nice black guy who seems very supportive. This is where the movie starts. They live in a small ugly apartment and are trying to prepare the perfect Thanksgiving dinner. Her mother is dying of cancer and there are a lot of references to how this will probably be their last meal together and how it's very important to get over their past differences and make up.
The review of this Movie prepared by Irina Bondarenko
April Burns (Holmes) is a teenager with a rough history, but finally somewhat settled in a ratty New York apartment with her new boyfriend Bobby (Luke). She has taken the momentous step of inviting her family to Thanksgiving dinner, even though she is famous for never having learned to cook. So while she wrestles with the meal (and such problems as a stove that doesn't work), her family -- including long-suffering dad Jim (Platt), two annoying younger siblings, but most famously her sick and overbearing mother Joy (Clarkson) who hates her -- make the long drive into the city. This is a very cheap 2003 independent film, written and directed by Peter Hedges. Camera work can get a bit garring, but the story makes few obvious missteps, and is quirky and sweet.
The review of this Movie prepared by David Loftus