3 April 2013 The Pieces That Made The Movie Many films come out each year that are unrealistic in comparison to the real world, making it hard for viewers to relate to the characters or to the story. Some of the best films make fiction believable, or they are based around real life events from the past. Movies released based on holidays in particular, can give the world visions of stereotypical American families that live and interact with one another unrealistically. Pieces Of April, directed by Peter Hedges, gives audiences a realistic example of how Thanksgiving can patch up holes between relatives and bring a family closer together.
April, (the main character), shows audiences the positive transitions of her own identity throughout the film, as she makes a believable attempt at creating a better relationship with her family by hosting Thanksgiving dinner. The apprehension April shows early on in the film regarding her family’s visit, turns into enthusiasm of their arrival. Although April was not familiar with cooking, she showed expectations that the preparation of the meal would be an easier task than it ended up to be.
She faced a few major obstacles that took viewers through loop holes along with her, keeping the story interesting. When she went to place the ice cold turkey into the oven, the oven happened to be broken. In her attempt to mash uncooked potatoes, she just made a mess and April learned quickly that canned and boxed ingredients were inferior to home recipes. In April’s search for a working oven, some of her neighbors turned out to be very helpful while others were no help at all. The dinner that initially was a task for one person, turned into an effort set forth by several people.
The group effort led up to a very powerful ending which displayed unity and cooperation that a holiday like Thanksgiving should be all about. April’s family did not have high hopes for the Thanksgiving dinner she was hosting. April’s sister, Beth, did not want to follow up on the invite at all. The whole family took their time rethinking the road trip in consideration of April’s mother, Joy. Joy was a cancer patient and her health played a big part in bringing the family closer as well. The whole family knew the risk that was involved with the trip, considering her condition.
Ready to go before the rest of the family, Joy seemed careless of her condition knowing that it was potentially the last chance for her to spend time with April. Joy did not have a single good memory of her misunderstood daughter. April was known for disappointing everybody. Joy showed anxiousness to see her daughter, hoping she would make her proud at least once in her lifetime. Towards the beginning of the film, it is almost as if April regrets inviting her family over for the holiday meal. She barely gets out of bed and does not show any sign of excitement when it comes time to get the day started.
April neglects her boyfriend’s ideas for decorations, and gives viewers the sense that she was only willing to do the bare minimum in preparation for the meal. Once April started to cook with help from the neighbors in her apartment building, you can see a change in her occur. By April’s neighbors sharing their family recipes and values with her, they influenced an improved attitude within her towards Thanksgiving. She came to realize that hosting this dinner was her shot at building a relationship with her family that she never had before.
Previously neglected decorations went from being thrown in the trash to setup on display, creating a welcoming atmosphere for her guests. The look of exhaustion and doubt on April’s face was quickly replaced by a look of confidence. Suddenly she possessed a great passion behind all of her hard work. April now wished to go far beyond her family’s expectations and really make the dinner something special for everybody to enjoy together. The course of change that took place when April grew passionate about making the Thanksgiving holiday special for her family, is a very believable one.
For example, sometimes people in society agree to obligations that seem undesirable at first, and then those people learn to grow passionate about such obligations. Those who try new things can find a sense of joy and fulfillment that they might have otherwise been neglected of, without having such experiences. Until she gave it a try, April was not aware of the happiness behind putting a family event together. She was also unaware of the communal atmosphere in her apartment building, that came together to help her find a working oven.
Overcoming such obstacles with the help from others in cooking the meal, was very humbling for April. The gratitude she showed for all of the help she received, was proof of the change that occurred within her. Although it did not come easy for April to unite her family and friends around the dinner table for Thanksgiving, in the end it was a very successful gathering. It was not a perfect dinner, but the effort April put forth proved her family’s expectations wrong, and they could not believe how special it truly was. April’s desire to get out of her comfort zone by cooking for the first time was inspiring.
The change that occurred in her attitude about what defined Thanksgiving and the humble approach she took in getting help from her neighbors, were all pieces that made her character special. Imperfections are what make a family unique and it is easy for viewers of this film to relate to such imperfections displayed . This motion picture shows audiences the positive transition of April’s identity, as she looks to prove her family’s assumptions wrong about her. Pieces of April can teach us about our own family values, the positive change that can occur within us and how important it is to keep an open mind.