Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017|2 a.m.
. In these ultra-anxious times, we might discover ourselves looking ever more forward to the happier seasons. That may be why the Hallmark Channel began marketing its coming Christmas movies well prior to Halloween, not to mentioned Thanksgiving, and is showing them now.
As we know, late November through December is the time of year when all of us gathering and argue about whether “Extreme” is a Christmas film or not. (I used to assert that obviously it was, today I acknowledge that position as perverse.) Today we still have Thanksgiving to get through, which led me to thinking, is the Thanksgiving movie a thing?
The motion picture I most relate to Thanksgiving is the 1933 original of “King Kong.” The movie itself has no thematic connection to the season, but on Thanksgiving Day the New York television station WOR/Channel 9 aired it every year without stop working. As a movie-mad youngster, I lived for this broadcast. I got back at more excited when the station added “Boy of Kong” and “Mighty Joe Young” to the mix and, as I entered my teenagers, Japanese monster films like, yes, “King Kong vs. Godzilla.” (My memory is such that I may be conflating movies that played the day after Thanksgiving with those that used the holiday correct, however it is a four-day weekend after all.) Quickly enough, the adults in the room had actually tired of indulging me and reclaimed the tv to use it as God planned on Thanksgiving, which is to enjoy football.
Football. Maybe that’s a factor Thanksgiving movies might not be a thing. The late 20th century delivered two authentic Thanksgiving movies that are now old adequate to consider classics– but are they sufficient? The first, “Airplanes, Trains and Autos,” is a 1987 funny from John Hughes, starring Steve Martin and the great, much-missed John Sweet, about an incredibly odd few business owners who find themselves teamed up versus their will in a breakneck run to make it to their respective Thanksgiving dinners.
The motion picture is streaming– supposedly– on the app of the cable channel Starz. I typically gain access to this app through my cable television company user ID and password, however when I aimed to see the movie that method on my iPad, a black screen and a message, in a really classy typeface, appeared instead: “First, a fast piece of organisation: While you now have access to lots of your favorite stuff, this title isn’t really provided by your supplier. We’re confident that you’ll find more of the obsessable series and motion pictures that you long for.”
Let the subscriber beware. I was able to see “Airplanes, Trains and Autos” on Starz through Amazon Channels, and advise me to cancel that membership before my seven-day free trial runs out (oops, too late now).
The film is vigorous and regularly funny, and it strikes the sentiment bone in a wise, reasonably honest method. The slow-burn rage of Martin against the oblivious amiability of Candy stays an incredible comical blend. As is traditional with films composed and directed by Hughes in the 1980s, there’s an American class-analysis subtext that holds the characterizations together: Martin’s aspirational hauteur is the irresistible force bulldozing into the unmovable things of Candy’s just-folks awkwardness. The language is still super-salty even by today’s requirements.
The second, “Home for the Holidays” (1995 ), appears it ought to get by on its cast alone: Holly Hunter, Robert Downey Jr., Anne Bancroft, Charles Durning, Geraldine Chaplin and Claire Danes. Not to point out Dylan McDermott, Cynthia Stevenson, and Steve Guttenberg cast versus type as an uptight in-law. As it happens, the motion picture, directed by Jodie Foster, has gotten back at more going for it. While you would not wish to call it prescient, Hunter’s character, Claudia, an artist turned restorer, is the kind of career-challenged bohemian whose status remains appropriate today. Downey’s mad gay bro is also rejuvenating in his nonstereotypical quirkiness. The family-is-almost-all-we’ve-got theme is a little pat however not absolutely cringe-worthy. It’s a smile-inducing sit, ranked PG-13 and totally free to stream on Amazon Prime.
Some images that are not totally set on Thanksgiving but are popular for their funny Thanksgiving scenes consist of the not-entirely-good teaming of Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau in “Grumpy Old Guys” (1993) and “Funny People” (2009 ), which features Adam Sandler offering a doozy of a Thanksgiving toast. (“Grumpy Old Men” is available totally free for Hulu subscribers, and both films can be rented or purchased through Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, Microsoft and Fandango Now.) If you’re not in the state of mind to view all “Funny People,” there’s a clip Fandango installed on YouTube.