Best 12 Thanksgiving Movies on Prime Video (Thanksgiving 2023)

Shikhar Jauhari

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Best 12 Thanksgiving Movies on Prime Video-min

It’s a shame that movies about Thanksgiving, which often feature family drama, personal tensions, and even terror, are often disregarded in favor of those about Halloween and Christmas. Whether you’re looking for a lighthearted flick or something a little more heartfelt this Thanksgiving, there’s bound to be a movie about family relationships and adventures on Amazon Prime Video that will hit the spot. We’ve compiled a list of 12 films that are ideal for watching on Thanksgiving.

12. Wimbledon (2004)


Genres: Comedy, Romance, Sport

Run Time: 1h 38m

Peter Colt (Paul Bettany), a fading English tennis prodigy, meets Lizzie Bradbury (Kirsten Dunst), a promising young American player. Peter hopes to spend his retirement teaching at a local club.

Richard Loncraine crafts a touching romantic comedy but relies too much on tropes, limiting his creativity. Still, it’s a pleasant surprise for fans of sports movies who want something that doesn’t rely too much on clichés.

The film opens with Colt getting ready to compete in the Wimbledon tennis championship. He has decided to retire since he feels hopeless about ever becoming successful in his chosen field. However, after getting a wild-card berth to play in the tournament, he can’t help but enter and meet up with Lizzie. Peter, played by Kirsten Dunst, meets and falls in love with Lizzie Bradbury, an emerging American female tennis player played by Paul Bettany.

Despite his initial distaste for her, the two eventually fall in love and have to make some effort to become friendly. Their camaraderie and budding romance boost them to get back in the game. However, their budding romance is thwarted by her overprotective father-manager, Dennis Bradbury (Sam Neill), who fears an open relationship will damage his daughter’s career.

11. We Bought a Zoo (2011)

We Bought a Zoo

Genres: Comedy, Drama

Run Time: 2h 4m

We Bought a Zoo, starring Matt Damon as Benjamin Mee, a widower who buys a rundown zoo on a whim, is another feel-good picture from Cameron Crowe (Almost Famous, Jerry Maguire).

After losing his wife to cancer, Benjamin takes his heartbroken children, teenaged Dylan and 7-year-old Rosie, from their suburban home to a former zoo, Dartmoor Zoological Park in rural California. He assembles a team led by the amiable Kelly Foster and begins a challenging restoration project there.

As he assembles the crew, he discovers that Rosemoor has been abandoned for many years and has become a dangerous slum. Benjamin enlists the aid of his team, which consists of curator Kelly and her young, love-struck niece Lily, to reopen the zoo and restore some of the popular attractions that were removed during its closure. He also enlists the help of an inspector with a vendetta against the zoo.

10. The Cutting Edge (1992)

The Cutting Edge

Genres: Comedy, Drama

Run Time: 1h 41m

While most modern love films have surprise plot twists, The Cutting Edge from 1992 disproved this trend. Despite the film’s formulaic training montages and competitive low points, it was well made. It had excellent chemistry between Kelly and Sweeney. Co-starring D.B. Weiss and Moira Kelly as Kate Moseley. Pairs figure skaters Sweeney and Doug Moseley at the 1992 Olympics in Sweden.

But despite its repeated premise, The Cutting Edge is a satisfyingly refreshing homage to the romance genre. Both primary characters are pretty likeable, and their friendship is based on mutual respect rather than cheap humor. There are numerous memorable moments in The Cutting Edge, from the Pamchenko twist to Kate’s proclamation of love, despite the film’s lack of originality.

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Kate Moseley (Moira Kelly) is a world-class skater in The Cutting Edge who, despite her talent, has never found a skating partner. The 1988 Olympics mishap causes her to lose lovers one by one. When she meets Doug Dorsey, an egotistical former Olympic hockey player.

9. Home for the Holidays (1995)

Home For The Holidays

Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance

Run Time: 1h 43m

After losing her job and falling for her old boss, Claudia Larson (Holly Hunter) goes home with Joanne (Cynthia Stevenson) to find that her daughter has other intentions than she had anticipated. This film does a beautiful job of capturing the craziness of the family dynamic while also imparting valuable life lessons.

Claudia Larson, a single mother, returns to Baltimore after losing her job and must deal with her eccentric and dysfunctional family, including her gay brother Tommy and his mysterious friend Leo, her conservative and resentful sister Joanne and her family, her demented Aunt Glady, and Claudia’s parents Adele and Henry.

This picture is a pleasant surprise, directed by Jodie Foster, whose debut film was the surprisingly amusing and likable “Little Man Tate,” about a single mother seeking to reconnect with her intelligent, slacker son. The ensemble cast is excellent, with Holly Hunter and Robert Downey Jr. particularly shining. Furthermore, they share fantastic chemistry as a pair.

Home for the Holidays is one of the best family dramas ever made. Unlike most others, this Thanksgiving movie doesn’t try to be funny. Everyone’s stories blend and clash in a way that is a funny and accurate representation of the family’s chaotic dynamics.

8. From the Vine (2019)

From the Vine

Genres: Comedy, Drama

Run Time: 1h 37m

Joe Pantoliano plays a stressed-out CEO who finds consolation in revisiting his family’s vineyard in Italy. There, he can reset his moral compass while strengthening his bonds with his wife and adult daughter. From The Vine is a Canada–Italy coproduction that combines magic realism and Italian neorealism to adapt Kenneth Canio Cancellara’s novel, Finding Marco.

Tired of Canadian corporate life, late-50s Mark Gentile (Joe Pantoliano) makes a spur-of-the-moment decision to return to the modest village of Acerenza where he grew up and hang out with his nonno. He has an ethical problem after a commercial failure in Canada. He chooses to try his hand at revitalizing his grandfather’s vineyard. Marina and Laura, his wife and daughter, believe he’s crazy. Still, he can’t seem to tear himself away from his youth’s familiar vineyards and faces.

Marco’s conversations with grapevines, memories of his grandfather, and regrets over his business failures play a role in the narrative. In addition, he shares snippets of his past and current life with his neighbors.

7. Clifford the Big Red Dog (2021)

Clifford the Big Red Dog

Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Family, Fantasy

Run Time: 1h 43m

Emily Elizabeth and her Uncle Casey go on a mission to save a normal-sized puppy named Clifford from the evil biotech company Lifegro after they meet an eccentric animal guru who offers it to her. The film is both formulaic and bizarre at the same time, thanks to its abundance of on-the-nose cheesiness and a photorealistic CGI animation of John Cleese partaking in an epic deli battle sequence. It also has universally appealing ideas about personal accountability and working together for the greater good.

As far as the CGI goes, it’s too rough and quirky to work for a big-screen movie, but it’s not horrible in its own way. However, the film’s CGI elements are only sometimes cohesive with the narrative. Some of these feature antics Clifford pulls with random New Yorkers. Unless you’re trying for a specific retro feel, a release from 2021 should accomplish something other than that.

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Darby Camp voices middle schooler Emily Elizabeth in the animated film based on the books by Norman Bridwell and Jack Whitehall as her reckless uncle Casey. David Bowers was supposed to take the helm of the picture initially.

6. Pieces of April (2003)

Pieces of April

Genres: Comedy, Drama

Run Time: 1h 20m

The first feature-length directorial and screenwriting effort by About a Boy and What’s Eating Gilbert Grape author Peter Hedges, this charming comedy strikes a nice mix between touching dramatic moments and entertaining comedic ones. Katie Holmes plays April, an outcast in her family who must help her mother deal with the end of her life with grace as she battles terminal cancer. In the film’s directing and screenplay, Hedges explains the movie’s release.

April is having difficulties with the turkey in the oven as the family gets ready to leave their suburban home and head to New York City for Thanksgiving dinner. She tries to reach the super, but he or she is gone for the holiday. A pretentious vegan rejects her call.

When April reaches her apartment, she finds a damaged stove in her kitchen and begins knocking on doors looking for help. She meets a slew of interesting people, including a Chinese couple who volunteer to help but don’t understand English, a snarky tenant named Sean Hayes, an Asian woman who doesn’t want to cook, a man who has issues with his terrible mother, and many more.

5. Elf (2003)


Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Family, Fantasy, Romance

Run Time: 1h 37m

Elf, released in 2003, is a great picture that celebrates generosity, optimism, and gratitude. Packed with kid-friendly humor, slapstick, and funny miscommunications.

Jon Favreau combines tried and tested techniques like forced perspective and traditional animation a la Rankin & Bass in creating North Pole sequences in Elf. Ferrell’s man-child style works perfectly with this upbeat story about outcasts in New York City around the holidays.

David Berenbaum, who also wrote the film’s script, adapted the novel into the screenplay. Buddy (Will Ferrell), an elf raised by humans who longs to learn more about his biological father, travels from the North Pole to the Big Apple in search of him. He is lost in the city, yet his upbeat disposition ensures he is never genuinely unnoticed. In New York, he encounters Walter Hobbs (James Caan), a jaded publisher whose icy heart is not melted by the sight of a six-foot-tall man in green tunic and yellow stretch tights who claims to be his son.

The two have instant chemistry upon meeting. But Walter’s skepticism and pragmatism are at odds with Buddy’s naiveté and boyish enthusiasm, leading to an increasingly tumultuous relationship. Soon, however, Buddy confesses that his mother, Susan Wells, had died before he was born and given him up for adoption.

4. Instant Family (2018)

Instant Family

Genres: Comedy, Drama

Run Time: 1h 58m

Daddy’s Home director Sean Anders has turned his experience adopting three brothers into a film that audiences will enjoy. Isabela Moner, who plays the older sister of Mark Wahlberg and Rose Byrne, has a breakout performance.

Pete and Ellie Wagner, played by Mark Wahlberg and Rose Byrne, want to start a family and have decided to foster children. They end up with Lizzy (Isabela Moner) and her two younger siblings, Juan (Gustavo Escobar) and Lita (Julianna Gamiz).

When their fostering efforts don’t pan out, they consider adoption an alternative. Along the way, they face numerous obstacles and frustrations as they learn to navigate their new parental roles. The film was directed by Sean Anders and is based on his life. It’s a comedy with serious themes, like the importance of sticking with something despite the odds.

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There are some serious themes, but they are lost in all the laughs. While it could have done a better job of representing the foster care system, the film is nonetheless worth watching because of the honesty with which it attempts to address some severe problems.

3. Rocky (1976)


Genres: Drama, Sport

Run Time: 2h

With an optimistic 1976 film helmed by Sylvester Stallone, Rocky Balboa fought heavyweight champion Apollo Creed in a fight that went on to win three Oscars. The film tells the story of a Philadelphia, USA, working-class man who overcame poverty and hopelessness to become a boxing champion and found love.

In the film, Rocky Balboa, played by Sylvester Stallone, is a 30-year-old boxer who works as a collections man for a loan shark. His sister-in-law, Adrianna Pennino (Talia Shire), is married to Paulie Pennino (Burt Young), with whom he shares a home.

As the world heavyweight boxing champion Apollo Creed prepares for a bout on the first day of the United States Bicentennial celebration, he discovers that his opponent cannot compete and gives local fighter Rocky Balboa a shot at his championship. Close-up hammering action in the ring and some unpleasant words intrigue this battle between two boxers.

Rocky becomes a household name thanks to the encouragement of his loved ones and the guidance of Mickey Goldmill (Burgess Meredith). He becomes a multimillionaire, is featured in innumerable commercials and TV shows, and basks in his newfound fame.

2. The Godfather (1972)

The Godfather

Genres: Crime, Drama

Run Time: 2h 55m

Marlon Brando’s portrayal of Don Vito Corleone, the influential and revered head of the criminal family of the Corleones, in the 1972 film The Godfather is widely regarded as a cinematic masterpiece.

The script, co-written by Francis Ford Coppola and Mario Puzo, expertly depicts the warmth and commitment of Italian families without generalizations. The film’s authenticity is bolstered by everyday moments like costly weddings and funerals, filled dinner tables, and spaghetti cooking in the kitchen. This is the key to the film’s success.

When Vito denies a cocaine transaction from a mobster named Sollozzo, the Corleone family is exposed to attacks that threaten their existence. This is where Michael comes in; he is an outsider looking in, but he has learned how to keep his family safe the hard way.

The book by Puzo had already sold several million copies before the movie came out. The popularity of this gangster epic, which features a stellar turn from Al Pacino and a memorable turn from Marlon Brando as the title character, is sure to increase as a result.

1. Little Women (2019)

Little Women

Genres: Crime, Drama

Run Time: 2h 55m

This classic and loving retelling of Louisa May Alcott’s classic brings to life the sweet and salty personalities, close bond, and dissatisfaction with limited alternatives faced by the March sisters.

Greta Gerwig expertly centers her film on Saoirse Ronan’s vivacious tomboy role of Jo. Still, the performances of the rest of the cast—particularly those of Emma Watson and Florence Pugh as the fiery Amy and the wounded Laurie—are just as captivating. While the March sisters have been the focal point of several adaptations of Alcott’s novel—including a Sony film nominated for an Academy Award in 1994—this story is about much more.

The March sisters ‘ narrative is told from the early 1800s until the current day, detailing their independent and adventurous youth spent in the countryside. As they develop, they each discover a unique ability. Meg, who goes on to become a writer, is the most imaginative of the four, while Beth, who wants to be an actor, has the most artistic bent. The film highlights the unique abilities of each of the three girls while also highlighting their collaborative efforts.

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