MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 927 this week

A Family Thing (1996)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  29 March 1996 (USA)
6.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 2,326 users   Metascore: 71/100
Reviews: 24 user | 24 critic | 17 from Metacritic.com

Earl Pilcher Jr., runs an equipment rental outfit in Arkansas, lives with his wife and kids and parents, and rarely takes off his gimme cap. His mother dies, leaving a letter explaining ... See full summary »

Director:

0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 82 titles
created 11 Apr 2011
 
a list of 252 titles
created 24 Jun 2012
 
a list of 25 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 42 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 906 titles
created 3 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: A Family Thing (1996)

A Family Thing (1996) on IMDb 6.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Family Thing.
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The families of children who died sue two companies for dumping toxic waste: a tort so expensive to prove, the case could bankrupt their lawyer.

Director: Steven Zaillian
Stars: John Travolta, Robert Duvall, Kathleen Quinlan
The Paper (1994)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Henry Hackett is the editor of a New York City tabloid. He is a workaholic who loves his job, but the long hours and low pay are leading to discontent. Also, publisher Bernie White faces ... See full summary »

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Michael Keaton, Glenn Close, Robert Duvall
Drama | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A housewife who is unhappy with her life befriends an old lady in a nursing home and is enthralled by the tales she tells of people she used to know.

Director: Jon Avnet
Stars: Kathy Bates, Jessica Tandy, Mary Stuart Masterson
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Five high school students, all different stereotypes, meet in detention, where they pour their hearts out to each other, and discover how they have a lot more in common than they thought.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: Emilio Estevez, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

When his only friend dies, a man born with dwarfism moves to rural New Jersey to live a life of solitude, only to meet a chatty hot dog vendor and a woman dealing with her own personal loss.

Director: Thomas McCarthy
Stars: Peter Dinklage, Patricia Clarkson, Bobby Cannavale
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A man joins the political campaign of a smooth-operator candidate for president of the USA.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: John Travolta, Emma Thompson, Kathy Bates
Simon Birch (1998)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young boy with stunted growth is convinced that God has a great purpose for him.

Director: Mark Steven Johnson
Stars: Ian Michael Smith, Joseph Mazzello, Ashley Judd
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An old Jewish woman and her African-American chauffeur in the American South have a relationship that grows and improves over the years.

Director: Bruce Beresford
Stars: Morgan Freeman, Jessica Tandy, Dan Aykroyd
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A lifelong feud between two neighbors since childhood, only gets worse when a new female neighbor moves across the street.

Director: Donald Petrie
Stars: Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, Ann-Margret
Juno (2007)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Faced with an unplanned pregnancy, an offbeat young woman makes an unusual decision regarding her unborn child.

Director: Jason Reitman
Stars: Ellen Page, Michael Cera, Jennifer Garner
About Schmidt (2002)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A man upon retirement embarks on a journey to his estranged daughter's wedding only to discover more about himself and life than he ever expected.

Director: Alexander Payne
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Hope Davis, Dermot Mulroney
With Honors (1994)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Convinced his thesis will have him graduate with honors from Harvard University, a stuffy student finds himself at the mercy of a homeless man's demands when he holds the papers hostage.

Director: Alek Keshishian
Stars: Joe Pesci, Brendan Fraser, Moira Kelly
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Virgil
...
Aunt T.
...
Ruby
...
Ann
Mary Jackson ...
Carrie
...
Karen
James N. Harrell ...
Earl Pilcher Sr. (as James Harrell)
Lauren Leigh Phillips ...
Kindra
Ashleigh Jordan ...
Danielle
...
Sonny
Sandra Quarterman ...
Young Aunt T. (as Saundra Quarterman)
Patrice Pitman Quinn ...
Willa Mae
Don James ...
Junior Turner
Edit

Storyline

Earl Pilcher Jr., runs an equipment rental outfit in Arkansas, lives with his wife and kids and parents, and rarely takes off his gimme cap. His mother dies, leaving a letter explaining he's not her natural son, but the son of a Black woman who died in childbirth; plus, he has a half brother Ray, in Chicago, she wants him to visit. Earl makes the trip, initially receiving a cold welcome from Ray and Ray's son, Virgil. His birth mother's sister, Aunt T., an aged and blind matriarch, takes Earl in tow and insists that the family open up to him. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

United Artists Pictures invites you on a journey... you will not soon forget. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language, brief violence and a childbirth scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 March 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Family Thing  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$10,118,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Although the storyline has James Earl Jones' character being about 6 years older than Robert Duvall's character, Duvall is actually older than Jones - by 12 days. See more »

Goofs

When Virgil and Ray are saying goodbye for the first time in front of Ray's house. Virgil is standing behind the car and the car moves before the engine starts. The next frame shows the car still in place then moving forward. See more »

Quotes

Earl Pilcher, Sr.: I've never seen a damn Yankee yet that could operate more than a wheelbarrow.
See more »

Connections

Features Rocky III (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

When Something Is Wrong With My Baby
Written by Isaac Hayes & David Porter
Performed by The Nightclub Band
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Acceptance & forgiveness - if only it was this easy
24 September 2001 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

A Family Thing is a drama about a Southen man (Duvall) who's mother reveals on her deathbed that he was not her child. Rather he was the result of a forced encounter between his father and the black help. In order to keep a promise Duvall sets off to find his half-brother (Earl-Jones).

Although the story seems to be about race - it's main theme is one of forgiveness and acceptance of others, with race being one of the barriers to break down.

All the characters have their own barriers to overcome - Duvall has to confront the fact that he is not white, Earl-Jones has to deal with his hatred of past events and Michael Beach has to come to terms with missing out on pro-football and the breakup of his marriage. Only the sagely aunt T. (Irma P. Hall) has the ability to accept everyone for whom they are - partly due to being blind "and not being able to judge folks on what they look like".

It's not an earth shattering piece of story telling and at times doesn't seem to have a consistent flow to it but it held my attention throughout and was actually quite rewarding.

It's all a bit tidy (in real life, nothing gets sorted this easy), but it definately makes you think.


13 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Duvall is not believable. jeremy3
I love this movie! tynabop
Irma P. Hall = Oscar worthy performance cpmorr
More films like this? BERSERKERpoetry
Curtains are moving jbelcher-2
Why are DVD prices insanely high for this movie cahammill
Discuss A Family Thing (1996) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?