"Boy, love is really unpredictable."
~from Hannah and Her Sisters, written and directed by Woody Allen
Let's face it. The holiday season is now upon us. Christmas shopping commercials are playing on television. We all know that there are way more movies about Christmas than there are about Thanksgiving. Brokeback Mountain has two Thanksgiving dinner scenes but I'm not quite sure many folks consider that to be a holiday film. Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) and What's Cooking? (2000) are two new Thanksgiving rental favorites of mine. For several years now, it's been a personal tradition of mine to watch Woody Allen's 1986 classic during Thanksgiving week. That's the perfect time to see it. First of all, didn't the three lead actresses -- Mia Farrow, Barbara Hershey and Dianne Wiest -- actually look like they were sisters? I was lucky enough to interview Barbara Hershey on WPIX TV/Channel 11 in New York before the film opened. I mentioned that during the interview. Wiest won the first of her two Best Supporting Actress Academy Awards for this film. Her other Oscar was for another Woody Allen film, Bullets Over Broadway. Michael Caine earned the Best Supporting Actor Academy Award for Hannah and Her Sisters. This Woody Allen gem is one of those top films that makes me say "Are you kidding me? Mia Farrow has never been nominated for an Oscar? Never?!?!" What a major oversight by the Academy. Especially considering performances like the one she gives in this as the always dependable oldest child of the three siblings. The peacekeeper and rescuer, if you will. Hannah's the one who handles their parents who occasionally act like unruly adolescents. Often, her career as a performer took a backseat to family matters. I'm the oldest of three siblings and, since the first time I saw this movie, I've felt a strong connection to Hannah. I understood her. I knew her. I recognized the dynamics of her role as the oldest child in the family. Although they were pumps, I felt like I'd been in her shoes as I watched her deal with relatives -- especially on Thanksgiving Day.
P.S. I love how costume designer Jeffrey Kurland outfitted Dianne Wiest as Holly.