Thanksgiving is nearly upon us, which, for those of us who avoid family during the holidays, means it’s a day dedicated to staring at your television or laptop’s screen for hours at a time. If you aren’t in the holiday spirit, perhaps because you’re spending it alone, we get it. Still, you don’t want to forget about the day entirely, right?
Below you’ll find several movies you should watch this Thanksgiving (without the added, constant reminder that you’re meant to spend it with friends or family). Sometimes, the best holidays are precisely the kind where you see no one and remain in the comfort of your couch, in sweats.
Addams Family Values
In case you’re looking for something a little less celebratory or joyous, Addams Family Values is a goddamn treasure, if only for Joan Cusack and Christina Ricci (and the plentiful GIFs I still use, thanks to this film). Ricci plays Wednesday Addams, who while at summer camp, stages a coup while recreating the very first Thanksgiving meal (albeit very violently).
Beethoven is a movie about a huge, unwieldy dog that is also kind of a genius? Abandoned by a pet store thief, Beethoven gets adopted by a family and predictably ruins Thanksgiving dinner, among other high jinks that ensue because the family somehow neglects to train him for years.
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
Steve Martin is an icon and Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, directed by John Hughes, is evidence of that. If you haven’t seen it, Martin’s character attempts to make it home in time for Thanksgiving after several predictable transit mishaps. The movie also features the late John Candy of Home Alone and Cool Runnings fame. Without spoiling it, the ending is bittersweet and I think I’m crying?
You’ve Got Mail
The year is 1998. Clinton is president. Ginger Spice leaves the Spice Girls. And You’ve Got Mail makes its debut, starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. The movie contains exactly one famous Thanksgiving scene, in which Ryan’s character has her credit card denied while shopping at Zabar’s and Hanks must come to the rescue.
The Family Stone
The Family Stone, starring Diane Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Clare Danes, is a film about one woman’s desperate attempts to win over her boyfriend’s family during the holidays. None of it actually takes place around Thanksgiving, but I urge you, reader, watch it anyway. It is has become something of a cult film because of how unlikeable most of the characters are, and yet, it’s a classic. Who do you even root for in a cast of characters who are all kind of assholes? It’s amazing!