A Family Thing

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Released 1995

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Movie Summary

Director:
Richard Pearce
Released:
1995
Rating:
PG-13
Earl Pilcher, Jr., has lived his entire life in the same house in the same town in rural Arkansas. An ordinary man, he was raised in the Southern traditions of family and, now in his 60s, his world is settled and uncomplicated. But Earl is about to discover that the one person he knows the least about is himself. Learning that his natural mother was actually a black woman, Earl embarks on a personal odyssey to find the half brother he never knew existed. Their first encounter is awkward and tense as each man is forced to confront his mistrust, anger and prejudice. But, embraced by the love and acceptance of a wily octogenarian, Aunt T., and guided by her innate wisdom, they begin to explore their pasts. Together Earl and Ray learn that, though their lives have been distanced by more than miles, the bonds of family are indestructible.

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Metacritic Score

  • 80

    The New York Times Stephen Holden

    In A Family Thing, an earnest upbeat fable about the meaning of brotherhood in America, first-rate film acting infuses a contrived story with enough flesh, blood, wrinkles, warts a...

  • 70

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    Neither flashy nor dishonest, a wizard with restraint, Pearce has a gift for discovering the excitement in honest human behavior, and working from an acute script by Billy Bob Thor...

  • 40

    Variety

    The handful of powerful speeches here do little, however, to offset story weaknesses that also include soft-edged characterizations, a faintly patronizing air regarding the black c...

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More Info About This Movie

Categories

Drama

Themes

Social Issues, African-American Drama