The Most Cross Cultural Thanksgiving Film & Television Shows to Watch!

27 Nov

As the US prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving tomorrow, LIH staff would like to share our favorite Thanksgiving film and television shows.  Enjoy!

“Downton Abbey” a Thanksgiving Tribute- By Comic Relief

No, England of the 20th century doesn’t celebrate America’s Thanksgiving holiday.  And no, some of the things said by the family (of the show) are not very complimentary; but God is this show a treasure. Of course I’m not the only fan of this show on these shores; many American’s can look beyond the venal, pretentious, and frequently horrifically entitled behavior of this family and genuinely see something we entirely lack in contemporary life.  A golden sense of reserve; for anyone who may be turned off a reality show to read this paragraph; if you have been living under a rock, let me tell you more about what may be an unusual period confection.

A production of WGBH Educational Foundation, PBS’s Masterpiece Theatre, and the UK’s leading independent drama producer Carnival, “Downton Abbey”follows the Crawley family while they adjust to the changing times of Edwardian England of the early twentieth century.  Among the many things this aristocratic family must adjust to — are but a few. We watch the family’s diminishing and changing wealth in response to bad investments. The toll World War 1 takes on England. It’s hard not to gawk at socially controversial sociological choices chosen by family.  After our recent recession, one might be shocked by their uncanny responses to a world that a family reared in and around this “castle” would appear to be oblivious to. All historical aspects of the drama are not entirely accurate [1], yet most situations still manage to stimulate intrigue about changes in the British culture of that time and how that might influence this culture today.

The Addams Family Values– By Ozzie

Obviously most of the world doesn’t celebrate Thanksgiving, however a number of religions have harvest festivals where thanks is given for that year’s harvest. Usually this involves ceremonies, decorations, prayers and celebratory feasts. So while we are familiar with some of the Thanksgiving traditions, we tend not to know much about the First Thanksgiving. Normally it is briefly taught in schools. This was the case for me anyway but I remember it in dull colors (school was a boring place!). But one movie came along and brought it to life! The Addams Family Values is not the first movie that brings to mind Thanksgiving but it does feature the holiday briefly in it. It amounts to about 7 minutes in total but the way it was presented was memorable! It features Wednesday and Pugsley taking part in their summer camp’s play of the First Thanksgiving, which they end up taking over, causing mayhem! Although it is not historically accurate, it did make what I had learnt more memorable. The story was no longer grey but very colorful and vivid. While it’s not an obvious choice for a Thanksgiving movie and maybe passed over for something better suited, it can be very helpful to those who aren’t American. As someone who has a terrible memory, it has helped me to remember a class that was mundane and for that reason, I am very thankful for The Addams Family Values! Plus it’s the perfect movie for the whole family to relax too.


Based on a true story this film speaks to universal human emotions that transcend country and culture.  It has a touching dose of Christmas cheer that puts humanity on display.

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving– By Parisienne

My favorite Thanksgiving film is actually a cartoon.  A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.  It reminds me of my childhood and being with my family.




12 Responses to “The Most Cross Cultural Thanksgiving Film & Television Shows to Watch!”

  1. Open Book November 27, 2013 at 4:29 PM #

    Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

    It’s nice to watch what everyone selected.

    CR- I’m surprised u chose Downton Abbey? I like watching the extended interviews.

    Ozzie- I think The Adamms Family Thanksgiving is a great fun example and reminds me what Thanksgiving is about.

    Paris- Now, Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is my all time fav. It transcends all cultures. My all time favorite quote. “We all should just be thankful for being together.” LOVE IT! 🙂

    • ozzie20 November 28, 2013 at 8:31 PM #

      I like CR’s choice purely for being a non tradtional pick, lol! I’m kind of ashamed to say I’ve never watched it but I have netflix now (YAY), so it’s on my list to watch!

      OB, I have never seen this movie before but I really want to! I might have to buy it in hopes that on Christmas Day I can persuade my Grandparents to watch this instead of the awful comedians they like. They’re just not funny!

      Paris, I did a doh and a head slap with your choice. I was struggling to find something and I can’t believe I forgot this classic!

      • comicrelief2 December 1, 2013 at 1:50 PM #


        I agree “Domneton Abbey” really doesn’t make any since. Yet I am thankful for a kind of entertainment that makes me think a little bit.
        It isn’t perfect (but what is). The doctor drives me crazy, (except when a character dies) the plot twist is almost always the same. And every episode there’s the “can I have a moment with you” scenario.

        Mrs. Bookness, I thought your selection was equally thankful. I’m becoming to be a BIGGER fan of Diane Kruger. Thanks for a thoughtful holliday option.

        Ozzie and Paris, I loved those shows when I was younger. They are the hollidady specials that I judge every other speical by.

  2. Open Book November 27, 2013 at 4:32 PM #

    In case u were wondering why I selected a Christmas film for my Thanksgiving film? In my family it was a tradition to watch Christmas films for Thanksgiving 🙂

    • littlebells November 27, 2013 at 4:40 PM #

      I started watching Christmas films last week!!! And yesterday I finally turned on the Christmas station!

      • ozzie20 November 28, 2013 at 8:07 PM #

        Awww, what a nice tradition!

      • comicrelief2 December 1, 2013 at 1:52 PM #


        I didn’t know there was a Christmas station. Does it exist all year?

  3. littlebells November 27, 2013 at 4:39 PM #

    Hi everyone! My apologies for not sending in my part. I’m at the in-laws today and leaving for La La Land tomorrow for a week. I loved all the choices and Paris, you picked my favorite. Anything peanuts is wonderful. 🙂

    • ozzie20 November 28, 2013 at 8:36 PM #

      Hope you have fun with the in-laws and in La La Land!

    • comicrelief2 December 1, 2013 at 1:53 PM #


      You’re celebrating in the most traditional manner; no need to apologize. Hope you enjoyed your holliday.

  4. ozzie20 November 28, 2013 at 8:05 PM #

    Hello Everyone! Happy Thanksgiving too! 🙂


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