If I had an Advent calendar for every person who complained about Christmas hitting the radar on November 1st, I’d have enough to last me until the Second Coming. But that’s all they do: complain. No one who bemoans Christmas creeping up the calendar offers solutions. They’re just humbugs trying to hate on our holly jolly. They don’t consider why people start thinking about (or marketing) Christmas in November.
People want to feel festive about something. There’s the marketing, too—there’s money to be made off of the warm fuzzy feelings—but people want to celebrate. The reason people want to feel the Christmas spirit before their pumpkins have decomposed is because Thanksgiving lacks pizzazz. It could be a firewall betwixt the spooky and the merry, but if we really want to keep Christmas in December, it’s gonna take more than a dank meal, a lame parade, and some football games. We need Thanksgiving movies to bolster the spirit of the season.
Think about it, what Thanksgiving movies are there? Planes, Trains, and Automobiles and some Charlie Brown joint. Did you know that PT&A was about Thanksgiving? You would if TBS showed it on a 24-hour loop annually for half of your life. When I googled “Thanksgiving movies,” a list containing Pieces of April was one of the results. You know what happens when you search “Thanksgiving” on Hulu? It shows you a bunch of Christmas movies. What a pathetic roster. We need better, and I’m here to get the Butterball rolling. All of the following ideas are copyrighted intellectual property and available to the highest bidder.
A hotshot New York real estate agent returns home for Thanksgiving. While there, she helps resolve a property dispute over the old caramel factory between the town and a development company. She falls for a surprisingly well-dressed townie with whom she went to high school.
A big city software developer is pressured by her grandfather to return to her rural hometown for the Thanksgiving Festival. While there, she rekindles a romance with an ex who left for military duty. There is a distinct, yet inexplicable Jesus-y vibe to the whole thing.
A series of contrived instances strongly implies to the audience that women with career aspirations who move to urban areas are wrong and should not trust their own ambitions. Only people in small towns know true happiness. There are several foliage money shots and socioeconomically incongruous set design.
Two siblings must save Thanksgiving dinner when they break the garage refrigerator where the side dishes are waiting to be reheated. Hijinx have them zigzagging across town to find a way to hide their blunder from their parents.
Fuck it. Why not?
It’s the 100th running of the Maple Valley Turkey Trot. No one in Jake’s family has ever won their age group, and even though he didn’t make the school track team, he’s determined to break that streak. Maybe there’s a cash prize and family business that needs saving.
Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo reprise their roles as Clark and Ellen Griswold, assuming she can still tolerate working with him, this time as grandparents. Rusty and Audrey come home for a long holiday weekend, spouses and children in tow. Clark’s obsessive planning for Black Friday shopping threatens to dampen everyone’s spirits.
Wallace & Gromit must contend with a plague of Turkeys after Wallace’s attempt to solve world hunger for Thanksgiving using a replicator goes awry. Is it logical that Wallace, a British person, would be celebrating Thanksgiving? No. Do I care? Obviously not, I’m an American.
Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Devon Sawa, and Erik von Detten star as the members of 90s boy band forced into a reunion tour by clause inserted into their original contract by their slimy manager. The guys rebel against their manager and demand three days off to celebrate Thanksgiving. After having their bluff called, they drag their manager to a soup kitchen and force him to help them serve, and enjoy, a traditional Thanksgiving day meal.
John McClane does John McClane stuff on the fourth Thursday in November. Viewers get to pretend like their answer to “Is it a Thanksgiving movie?” is somehow edgy and interesting.
Without a proper slate of Thanksgiving themed television programming to fill out the long weekend, there’s no hope of keeping Christmas fare from staking a claim to November. I have sown the seeds of a cinematic harvest. It’s now up to Hollywood to tend the crop and distract us from the looming yuletide that awaits us after Black Friday. All they have to do is give me a producer’s credit.