Pieces of April

Director: Peter Hedges
Year Released: 2003
Rating: 1.0

Hedges thinks it’s a good idea to make a film about Katie Holmes' difficulties cooking a Thanksgiving dinner; he also happens to think it's smart to juxtapose her culinary woes with her family's drive to visit her while leaning (very) heavily on the Patricia Clarkson-has-cancer emotional kicker. This mixture of pointless 'humor' (Sean Hayes' kooky, dog-loving neighbor and a scene where the family nearly has a collective orgasm eating donuts) and overwrought cues (the scene in a bathroom where Clarkson sees a mother mistreating her daughter ... or the scenes where Clarkson vomits or smokes pot with her son) does not work in such typical surroundings; when it arrives at its snap-shot ending, I was waiting for the CBS logo to pop up or a line in the credits saying Hallmark produced it. Families are dysfunctional? You don't say.