An uptight, conservative businesswoman accompanies her boyfriend to his eccentric and outgoing family's annual Christmas celebration and finds that she's a fish out of water in their free-spirited way of life.
Single-girl anxiety causes Kat Ellis to hire a male escort to pose as her boyfriend at her sister's wedding. Her plan, an attempt to dupe her ex-fiancé, who dumped her a couple years prior, proves to be her undoing.
Everett Stone, who made it on Wall Street, returns home for Christmas with his bride Meredith Morton. His ultra-liberal, anti-conventional rustic Connecticut family doesn't exactly warm to the outsider, who despite her best efforts to please prospective in-laws looks, sounds and acts like the conservative bigots they hate, while various Stones have their own problems. Only matriarch Sibyl Stone's unshakable maverick other son Ben gives her a chance, and as Everett won't actively turn against either, she feels more supported by him and a weird romance blossoms. feeling beleaguered, Meredith calls in help from her easygoing sister Julie, who proves no help to her but soon develops a chemistry with Everett, so everything may now shift if they dare follow their hearts.Written by
Writer and Director Thomas Bazucha put the nine cast members playing the Stones through several weeks of rehearsal so they would bond well enough off-camera to convincingly portray a family. This included a crash course in American Sign Language, as eight of the nine characters would be called upon to utilize American Sign Language in the script to either communicate with or interpret for the character of Thaddeus (Ty Giordano). While some critics, and the cast members themselves, pointed out that their American Sign Language use was sub-par, it was actually a realistic portrayal of a hearing family's use of the language, which is often perfunctory at best. See more »
When Meredith gives each of the Stones the framed photograph of a formerly pregnant Sybil, every one is in a somewhat plain black frame with a small white matte. Assuming that one of those frames (most likely the one gifted to Sybil and Kelly directly) was intended to be the one hanging next to the family Christmas tree in the final shot of the film, one can see that these are two totally different sized, matted, and designed fames. The one at the end is a much larger, more ornate frame with a sizeable black matte. Clearly, they could have had the picture re-framed in the ensuing year, but we can infer that each was identical during the gifting scene because of their uniform wrapping and the fact that we see more than one of them opened on screen, and all are the same. See more »
Thomas Bezucha's 'The Family Stone' surprised me. I expected a catty WASPish family satire that, at least, was the impression given in most reviews. I liked this a great deal. The discomfort felt by Sarah Jessica Parker's uptight career girl as she spends Christmas with her partner's close-knit New England liberal family is used to good effect, but as much awkwardness is felt as a result of their jibes as by her tactlessness, so she's not marked out solely as a stooge. Dermot Mulroney, Rachel McAdams (the best thing in Wes Craven's 'Red Eye'), Luke Wilson (a much better actor than brother Owen) and Diane Keaton also give fine turns, and Craig T. Nelson - another much underrated character actor is perfectly cast Keaton's husband. It's occasionally sentimental, as certain family secrets are revealed, but never in a sickly manner, and works principally because it's that rare Hollywood beast, a genuinely well written ensemble piece. Good work Mr Bezucha. Worth a look.
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