Parents' Guide to

Thanksgiving

By Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Exceedingly gory, but also clever, witty holiday slasher.

Movie R 2023 107 minutes
Thanksgiving Movie Poster: The John Carver killer, an axe slung over his shoulder, stands in the middle of the street, his back to the camera, with a big Happy Thanksgiving banner hanging in the background

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 8 parent reviews

age 18+

Old school slasher movie!

Dive into this horror flick that's a total throwback to those crazy, blood-soaked classics. It's like a blast from the past, but with a fresh, modern vibe. This movie pays respects to the old-school scarefests by mixing gallons of gore with outrageous scenes. What makes it special is how it knows it's a bit over-the-top yet still kinda serious. They use old-school effects that make all the blood and guts feel real. It's like a trip down memory lane, but with a cool new spin—a creepy, fun tribute that feels both familiar and excitingly different.
age 15+

Instant thanksgiving classic!

Thanksgiving was one of the most creative horror movies I've seen, while also keeping the 90s slasher feel. I thought the killers were really gory, and amazingly shocking, and I also thought it was genius all the ways they put thanksgiving related things into the movie. I'm sad that there aren't really any thanksgiving movies, so i'm so glad this movie was made. Instant thanksgiving classic.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (8 ):
Kids say (8 ):

This gory slasher movie is happily absent director Eli Roth's former cruel, misogynistic touches, taking instead a playful, self-aware approach that's both fun and darkly funny. Thanksgiving, like Machete and Hobo with a Shotgun before it, was born as one of the five phony trailers included in Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez's 2007 anthology film Grindhouse. That phony Thanksgiving trailer was made to look like a grungy artifact from the 1970s, and Roth has retained some of its shocking images -- including a person in a turkey suit being beheaded during a parade -- but updated the overall mood.

Thanksgiving feels similar in tone and in logic to meta-horror movies like Scream, Happy Death Day, Totally Killer, and It's a Wonderful Knife, but with a willingness to tiptoe ever slightly closer to the edge of taste. Yet certain touches, such as a pair of corn holders adorned with smiley faces, show more of a knack for playing the audience like a piano. Despite the humorous tone, there are definitely nightmare-worthy images. But that's what may lead horror hounds to decide that Thanksgiving is their new annual favorite to fire up while digesting that last bit of pumpkin pie.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: November 15, 2023
  • On DVD or streaming: January 30, 2024
  • Cast: Nell Verlaque , Addison Rae , Patrick Dempsey
  • Director: Eli Roth
  • Inclusion Information: Female actors
  • Studio: TriStar Pictures
  • Genre: Horror
  • Topics: Holidays
  • Run time: 107 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R
  • MPAA explanation: strong bloody horror violence and gore, pervasive language and some sexual material
  • Last updated: February 8, 2024

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