Thanksgiving day is a special part of the holiday season. It’s a time to celebrate family along with festivities such as eating great food, playing sports, and watching movies to get you into that holiday mood. There are so many movies to choose from to get you into that perfect holiday spirit. So, we’ve put together this list of 5 Thanksgiving movies to watch this holiday season.
I know I’m cheating by putting two combined on this list but it isn’t until just now that I realized how perfect of a pairing these two films are for Thanksgiving. John G. Avildsen’s 1976 classic Rocky is a perfect watch at any time of the year, as is it’s 2015 spin-off Creed.
Rocky is particularly special to watch around the holidays not only because it has an iconic scene set on Thanksgiving day. It also has a heartwarming story that the underdog protagonist, played by Sylvester Stallone, has to go through during the runtime.
The moral issues explored make it a great film to watch with the family and although it’s spin-off Creed doesn’t take place during Thanksgiving, it was released in theaters on Thanksgiving day 2015. The character journey explored in the highly-acclaimed film starring Michael B. Jordan as Adonis Creed also creates a perfect holiday season viewing experience, even with some intense fight scenes throughout. At its core, Creed is a film about the importance of family, legacy, and paving your own path in life.
Addams Family Values
1991’s The Addams Family is arguably one of the best comedies of the nineties. It’s 1993 sequel, Addams Family Values, ranks pretty high up on that list as well. Aside from its wonderful family dynamic, this film is perfect for Thanksgiving viewing due to how hilarious it is. The holidays are a time for celebration and joy. This is why a charming film such as Addams Family Values is the perfect way to end your Thanksgiving celebration.
A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
The Charlie Brown holiday specials are short and sweet films to watch all year-round. Clocking in at 30-minutes, this iconic Peanuts short is the perfect addition to any holiday evening. It’s funny, sweet, and its beautiful animation perfectly captures that Thanksgiving day atmosphere. Not only is it the perfect movie to sit down and watch on the big day, but you can also have it playing with the sound off in the background while friends and family mingle throughout the day. It’s a great way to set the mood for the holiday evening.
The Oath is the type of movie you put on during Thanksgiving after the kids have gone to bed. You’ve probably never heard of this 2018 black comedy directed by, written by and starring Ike Barinholtz but you should definitely go out of your way to do so. If you haven’t seen a trailer yet, don’t watch one. Go into this blind and experience the unexpected, witty and clever story on its own merits.
This film perfectly captures the Thanksgiving arguments that some politically divided families have each year and sets it in a new, unique world that makes the perfect backdrop for the film.
The best part is that, although it’s a very politically charged film, it doesn’t take a side. It paints both sides, with the help of the new context added within the unique Twilight Zone-esque story, as flawed and with room to improve. It’s a strange movie and gets pretty dark but it’s a clever, fresh film that will leave you with a lot to think and talk about with your family and friends after watching.
Prisoners the type of movie you turn on for Thanksgiving once the kids AND the grandparents go to bed. This is definitely the darkest entry on this list and you should be well-aware of that beforehand, but if you like a good, tense, twisty crime drama that also tackles the topic of family and trauma, Prisoners is the perfect choice for you.
Although it’s not as fun and cheerful as some of the other Thanksgiving movies on this list, fans of Oscar-season will find this drama to be fitting viewing during the November months. Plus, through its grim, twisted story it accentuates the importance of family and the fear of losing your loved ones.
This is a great Thanksgiving viewing if you’re in the mood for something a bit more challenging. As opposed to The Oath, I recommend watching the trailer for Prisoners beforehand. If it seems like it will be too much for you to handle, it might be. But, if it seems interesting to you then it is more than worth a watch. It’s not a terribly violent movie but it does deal with some heavy themes and events.
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