After the dinner is cleaned up and the pies are eaten, one our family’s favorite ways to spend the rest of the evening is to sit outside and eat s’mores by the fire pit and then come in and watch a holiday movie.

While holiday movies now play from July-December, Thanksgiving movies are usually a one-and-done kind of thing. It doesn’t help that there aren’t that many Thanksgiving-focused movies out there. But I have compiled a list of family-friendly movies that revolve around Thanksgiving, even if only in a November-y kind of way. I hope you enjoy them!


Blurbs and Links courtesy of Amazon:


Planes, Trains, and Automobiles ~ “An uptight businessman teams up with an irritating know-it-all blabbermouth to find any means possible to make it home for Thanksgiving when a major snowstorm strands then in the Mid-West.”

This classic John Hughes movie with Steve Martin and John Candy will make you laugh and cry and I promise, by the end, you’ll be grateful for all of your blessings. And you’ll never look at holiday travel the same way again!


A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving ~ “Two slices of toast, a handful of jellybeans, some pretzels – not quite what comes to mind when you think of Thanksgiving dinner. It’s not what Peppermint Patty imagines either, but that’s what she gets when she invites herself over to Charlie Brown’s house for a turkey-day feast. After chastising “Chuck” for providing such a meager meal, she ends up eating more than her words and gains a few pounds of emotional sustenance. She also learns a little bit about the true meaning of the holiday. And you will too.”

Too charming for mere words. This is a classic animated film because it makes your heart sing. And I have no doubt that you’ll yearn for jellybeans and toast at your next feast.


Miracle on 34th Street ~ “A department store Santa is out to prove he’s the real Claus in this spirited 1947 holiday classic.”

Although considered a Christmas movie, this movie opens on Thanksgiving day with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in NYC. A lovely story about the true meaning of Christmas and what it means to have a child-like faith.


Dutch ~ “A snobbish rich kid and his mother’s new working-class boyfriend find themselves on a road trip from Atlanta to Chicago just before Thanksgiving. Dutch is on a mission to forge a relationship with the snotty Doyle and will do almost anything to make it home in time for dinner.”

An adorable movie from the 1990’s that will make you laugh and keep you wondering, until the very end, if these two will ever become the family they both so desperately want.


An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving ~ “Set in the late 1880’s, a widowed mother of four struggles to keep food on the table. The oldest daughter sends a letter to her estranged and very wealthy grandmother urging her assistance, much to her mother’s disapproval.”

This movie is based on Louisa May Alcott’s short story of the same title. When Mary, the mother, tries to put on Thanksgiving for her three children, despite the fact they have no money, miracles abound.


The Blind Side ~ “Oscar-winners Sandra Bullock and Kathy Bates, and country singing star Tim McGraw headline this deeply moving adaptation of the Michael Lewis bestselling book.”

This movie is based on the true story of a homeless teen. While not technically a Thanksgiving movie, it has a wonderful Thanksgiving scene that will make you appreciate the true meaning of eating at the table as a family. It’s one of the best scenes of the movie.


Sweet November ~ “A power-suited ad executive (Keanu Reeves) and a free-spirited pet groomer (Charlize Theron) share a life-altering romance.”

A super-cute rom-com about a woman who invites a man she met at the DMV to spend the month of November with her. A request that changes his life forever.


 American Experience: The Pilgrims ~ “A documentary film by award-winning director Ric Burns, The Pilgrims chronicles the deep history, origins, and critical first decade of the first permanent English colony in New England.”

This documentary is a re-creation of the story about the “First Thanksgiving” and the founding of the first English colony in New England.


The New World ~ “This romantic epic brings to life the tale of Pocahontas and her relationship with adventurer John Smith set during the turbulent beginnings of America.”

The movie follows the mythical love story of Captain John Smith and Pocahontas. It’s set against the backdrop of Virginia’s Jamestown settlement which makes it a great family movie for Thanksgiving night.


Love at the Thanksgiving Day Parade ~ “The annual Chicago Thanksgiving Day parade has to cut costs or it’s going to be cancelled this year. When the city brings in consultant Henry Baldwin to analyze the books, he goes toe to toe with parade manager Emily Rogers who thinks Henry only cares about dollars and cents and doesn’t understand how much the parade means to the city.”

A Hallmark Thanksgiving movie that’s quite good. It’s a sweet romance about a woman who handles Chicago’s annual Thanksgiving Day parade and the cute, wealthy man hired to handle the finances. Can they work together to save the parade? Will they fall in love and live Happily Ever After? (The answer to both questions is yes!)


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