A wayward daughter invites her dying mother and the rest of her estranged family to her apartment for Thanksgiving dinner.


Peter Hedges


Peter Hedges
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Katie Holmes ... April Burns
Derek Luke ... Bobby
Oliver Platt ... Jim Burns
Alison Pill ... Beth Burns
John Gallagher Jr. ... Timmy Burns
Patricia Clarkson ... Joy Burns
Alice Drummond ... Grandma Dottie
Vitali Baganov ... Half Asleep Man
Lillias White ... Evette
Isiah Whitlock Jr. ... Eugene
Adrian Martinez ... Man in Mohair Sweater
Susan Bruce Susan Bruce ... Tish
Jamari Richardson Jamari Richardson ... Boy on Bicycle
Leila Danette Leila Danette ... Woman in Stairwell
Stephen Chen Stephen Chen ... Lee Loung Tan


In a very poor zone of New York, April Burns and her boyfriend, the Afro-American Bobby, are preparing to receive April's family for thanksgiving dinner. While Bobby tries to borrow a suit for himself, April realizes that her stove is broken. She tries desperately to find a neighbor that can let her cook the turkey, since she does not want to fail (again) with her family. Meanwhile, in a suburb of Pennsylvania, her dysfunctional family is preparing to travel to New York. While driving, the relationship between the Burns and their black-sheep April is disclosed through the conversations between her father Jim, her resented mother Joy, her brother, her sister and her grandmother. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


She's the one in every family.


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, sensuality, drug content and images of nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Features Patricia Clarkson's only Oscar nominated performance. See more »


At the end of the film, when the snapshots are shown of April and her mother hugging, April is wearing a pink sweater. In the very next shot of Joy's face April is not wearing the sweater. See more »


Joy Burns: This way, instead of April showing up with some new piercing or some ugly new tattoo and, God forbid, staying overnight, this way, we get to show up, experience the disaster that is her life, smile through it, and before you know it, we're on our way back home.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to ... The Cata Family, ... Elan, Scott, Ira and all the tenants of 176 Suffolk Street. See more »


Referenced in BoJack Horseman: Nice While It Lasted (2020) See more »


Written by David Mann (as Dave Mann) and Emanuel Kallins (as Emmanuel Kallins)
Performed by Studio Musicians
Courtesy of FirstCom Music, Inc.
See more »

User Reviews

First cooking attempt out of love
7 December 2010 | by mmunierSee all my reviews

OMG, as a retired person I can switch the TV on whenever I like and do so often at noon, but today I was not prepared for this! I just planted myself at the breakfast bar on a bar stool and proceed to something some call lunch and clicked on the TV. "Pieces of April", what kind of title is this, another tele movie to entertain my lunch for a few minutes? - weeeell, so much more than that, at times "lunch" had problem to find its way down as there was a big lump in my throat and my watery eyes glued on the TV set wondering what would happen next, and would it be good. I could not believe this wonderful work had passed me without saying hello in one form or other. I can't understand the detachment from TV channels, they'll beat you ears to no end with some insignificant trash, but won't say a word about this kind of art work. On the other end I'm glad they did not as it was such a joy to see this without any expectations. You can't help but being involved in the plot. You become part of this young woman's struggle to achieve a goal against all odds. And will she succeed? This question remains in her mind and yours till the very end, you can't guess, you can only hope in despair with her. As for the guests to her effort, a Thanks Giving dinner, You may understand them but you may also wonder about them. I hope you will see this film, just like me, with no idea at all about what it is. but it would be an even greater disaster if you did not see it at all.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 188 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.





English | Mandarin

Release Date:

28 November 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pieces of April See more »

Filming Locations:

Long Island, New York, USA See more »


Box Office


$300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$48,422, 19 October 2003

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed