After losing her job, making out with her soon-to-be former boss, and finding out that her daughter plans to spend Thanksgiving with her boyfriend, Claudia Larson faces spending the holiday with her family.
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Robert Downey Jr.,
Natasha Gregson Wagner
After losing her job, making out with her soon to be ex-boss, and finding out that her daughter plans to spend Thanksgiving with her boyfriend, Claudia Larson has to face spending the holiday with her family. She wonders if she can survive their crazy antics.Written by
Cyndi Kessler <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When Claudia is in the basement in her sister's house, the Step (piece of exercise equipment next to the Stair Climber) has carpet taped to the top. Later, as she leaves, the carpet has vanished. See more »
She'll bounce back. Trust me on this. No, she feels her feelings. But she'll bounce back. Feelings come up and she actually feels them, which is great.
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Jodie Foster's second film as director shows her faltering a bit from her debut with the moving, funny "Little Man Tate". Working with an uneven script that is better in its straight dramatic moments than as a comedy, Foster can't get a realistic rhythm going between the disgruntled family members at this Thanksgiving reunion. Every scene involving Geraldine Chaplin as a neurotic aunt is a loss, and Robert Downey, Jr. is awful as the obnoxious gay brother of Holly Hunter. Hunter usually gives flaccid scripts like this a little boost, but even her timing is off (especially in the early introductory scenes, which don't work at all). Finally, as if the clouds parted and clarity shined through, the movie picks up in its final twenty minutes. There's a scathing scene between the sisters ("If I met you on the street--if you gave me your number--I'd throw it away") and Charles Durning's remembrance of his family at the airport is wonderfully wistful. I also admired the final arty shots showing the past and the present (with the camera circling madly, joyfully), and then a crystal clear shot of a plane descending into the velvet sky. Are these moving moments enough to justify the glut of an otherwise overwrought picture? Almost. ** from ****
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