Happy Thanksgiving! Here Are Five Movies You Can Watch With Your Family – Or Without Them

Happy Thanksgiving! It is that time of the year again. Time to thank your family, friends, and the world for helping you survive another year. While you are at it, thank yourself with some extra stuffing of that turkey you have been meaning to eat for a good while now.

Meanwhile, have you ever wondered why Hollywood movies based on Thanksgiving are so few and far between? I mean, what is Hollywood’s problem with Thanksgiving? If one was to make a list of all the Christmas flicks out there, the list would probably end up being so long that you would need to watch them in parts over the course of your lifetime. However, if only you wanted to watch a Thanksgiving movie with your family (now that you have stuffed yourself with so much turkey), you would have to do some darn good searching. Because a Thanksgiving movie is a pretty rare bird!

That is so completely not fair, considering Thanksgiving is the beginning of the holiday season. After all, spending your holiday season happy, stuffed up, and glued to your TV screens is not an altogether bad idea. So if you are planning to watch a movie with your family, friends, or even if you are home alone, here are five movies that will keep the Thanksgiving spirit kicking inside you!

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

What better way than to start with George Seaton’s post-war classic Miracle on 34th Street? While traditionally considered a Christmas movie, many forget that the movie starts with Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. That’s reason enough for the movie to become an ideal watch post-Thanksgiving dinner.

In fact, the movie is widely considered as the perfect embodiment of the spirit of the entire holiday season. Watch it you haven’t already — it will make for a happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving movies
Original movie poster. (Photo: Wikipedia)

Rocky (1976)

“To you, it’s Thanksgiving; to me, it’s Thursday,” Rocky tells Adrian in one of the most emotionally charged scenes of the decade.

The movie had to be part of the list simply because of that scene, even though the turkey gets thrown out of the window! A rags-to-riches story about the man himself, aka Sylvester Stallone, much of the movie takes place around the holidays.

An emotional love story at its core, the movie packs a hell of an emotional punch, much like Rocky himself. No better time to revisit the classic if you do not mind a teary-eyed Thanksgiving with family members hugging you for comfort.

Rocky is one of the movies on the list.
Such a classic that they had to put Rocky's statue next to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. (Photo: Stefan Ogrisek / Flickr under CC 2.0)

Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987)

Perhaps the movie that comes closest to embodying the happy spirit of Thanksgiving, this 1987 road comedy about two strangers trying to get home for the holiday is emotional, funny and insightful. Starring Steve Martin as a control freak of a father trying his hardest to make it to Chicago in one piece to spend Thanksgiving with his family, he stands in full contrast to John Candy’s manic performance as a loud-mouthed, curtain ring salesman.

You will have a blast with this one.

Thanksgiving movie list: Planes, Trains and Automobiles.

Thankskilling (2009)

Now, many of you might be left wondering why is this low-budget comedy horror film on the list? Well, because it is unlike all the other movies mentioned above. Super cheesy in its execution and full of references that often do not work the way they were intended, this Jordan Downey movie could be a laugh riot you wouldn’t mind revisiting next Thanksgiving too!

Premised on the rise of a demonic turkey who aims to kill white people on Thanksgiving, this movie might just be the only one to have seen it from the turkey’s point of view. Hilarious!

Still Alice (2014)

The most recent movie on the list, Still Alice is the heartbreaking tale of Alice Howland, played by Julianne Moore, a linguistics professor who, at the outset of Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland’s drama, discovers she has early onset familial Alzheimer’s.

Moore’s poignant performance won her the first Oscar after four nominations, and you will not stop crying in the scene where she can barely get through a Thanksgiving dinner without forgetting the names of her family members, including her daughter, played by Kristen Stewart.

Nothing will help you bond with your family members more than this tearjerker, heart-rending Thanksgiving movie!

Still Alice movie poster
(Photo: Wikipedia)

Hopefully, the movies on this list will make your holiday gathering just that extra bit special. Have a happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

[Image via Paramount Pictures]