Throughout the years, there have been several impactful films centered around family love and dynamics. The concept of family is something that many can relate to, and seeing it portrayed on screen can ignite many feelings of nostalgia. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have learned the importance of family and loved ones and, unfortunately, many have experienced the pain of loss. Films based around families can create scenes that are comedic, dramatic, and endearing. Many of these films show that when hard times hit, it’s going to be your family who are there to support you.
Films like Kramer Vs. Kramer show you that even if marriages don’t last, there is still a bond there due to the fact of sharing a child. Family dynamics have changed a lot in the past decades for the better, and the world now sees many types of families that are not exactly traditional. When it comes down to it, a true family member is someone who will always be there for you through the good and the bad. They will always be there to guide you through life without judgment. There are many films focused on strong bonds created by families. Let’s take a look at the best films celebrating family love.
8 The Family Stone
The Family Stone is an underrated Christmas gem showcasing the strong bonds of the Stone family that comes together every Christmas. This time, their oldest son, Everett (Dermot Mulroney), brings home his girlfriend (Sarah Jessica Parker), who fails miserably to fit in with the Stone family. Each member of the Stone family has a unique persona about them, but they all share a close love for one another. At the same time, they all must face the fact that this will be their mother’s (Diane Keaton) last Christmas, giving us a fine tale of accepting loss and moving forward.
7 What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
What’s Eating Gilbert Grape focuses on the bond between Gilbert Grape (Johnny Depp), and his mentally impaired brother (Leonardo DiCaprio). Gilbert does whatever he can to be there for his family, including his morbidly obese mother (Darlene Cates). The film focuses on the struggles of sacrifice when caring for the ones you love. Gilbert does wish to make a life of his own, but he refuses to abandon his little brother and the rest of his family. It is an unconventional tale of love, life, and the power of brotherhood.
6 The Royal Tenenbaums
The Tenenbaums are far from a traditional family. They are disconnected and dysfunctional, but come together when their estranged father, Royal (Gene Hackman), informs them that he is dying, when in fact he is lying. Wes Anderson’s artistic film showcases the power of family getting through the most unusual circumstances. Chas (Ben Stiller) refuses to forgive his father for his wrong doings, and Margot (Gwyneth Paltrow) has never felt accepted due to the fact that she is adopted. The Royal Tenenbaums is a great blend of comedy and drama that focuses on many topics including divorce, death, and the power of family.
5 The Kids Are All Right
In The Kids Are All RIght, Annette Bening and Julianne Moore play a middle-aged couple who conceived two children through a sperm donor. While the family seems happy on the surface, there are many underlying issues. Bening’s character drinks too much, Moore’s character feels like an underachiever, and the two children feel confused, especially when their mothers’ sperm donor comes into their life. This brilliant film showcases the power of a family sticking together through tough times. At the same time, it shows the struggles of keeping a relationship intact after several years of marriage.
4 The Descendants
The Descendants focuses on a man (George Clooney) trying to take care of his daughters while his wife is in a coma, on the brink of death. At the same time, he ponders his ancestors as he debates whether or not to sell an inherited piece of land. The film shows the struggles of being a parent while dealing with the fact that his wife was unfaithful. Even though he feels disdain for his wife, he has to do right by his daughters and his in-laws. Alexander Payne’s film features a brilliant script and one of Clooney’s best performances to date.
3 Kramer Vs. Kramer
Kramer Vs. Kramer showcases the tragedy of a failed marriage, but focuses on the life-long bond that comes along when having a child together. The film is filled with conflict while Ted (Dustin Hoffman) and Joanna (Meryl Streep, in one of her best roles) fight for custody for their son (Justin Henry). At the same time, the movie centers on the love between Ted and his son that grows after Johanna leaves them. In the end, Ted and Johanna put their differences aside for the benefit of their son, giving us an emotional, but happy, ending.
2 Little Miss Sunshine
Little Miss Sunshine tells the story of a family filled with flaws and conflicting personalities. On a roadtrip to get the youngest daughter, Olive (Abigail Breslin), to a beauty pageant, the family learns to come together during many chaotic adventures. What the film shows brilliantly is that life doesn’t always turn out the way that you expect it, but in the end, your family will be there to get you through it. Little Miss Sunshine features fantastic performances, including Alan Arkin who won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.
1 Terms Of Endearment
Terms of Endearment focuses on many topics including parenthood, infidelity, and overcoming loss. The film centers on the powerful relationship between Aurora (Shirley MacLaine) and her daughter, Emma (Debra Winger), over the course of many years. The film shows you that life is never fair, and it will throw you many unexpected things along the way. Through it all, the love between Aurora and Emma keeps them afloat through the pain and struggles. In the heartbreaking ending, when Emma tragically dies, Aurora is there for Emma’s children, giving us a story of pushing forward through loss.
Ryan Reynolds leads Netflix’s The Adam Project in latest images.
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