The Family Stone (2005)
An uptight, conservative, businesswoman (Sarah Jessica Parker) accompanies her boyfriend to his eccentric and outgoing family's annual Christmas celebration and finds that she's a fish out of water in their free-spirited way of life.
This movie always cracks me up, because I can totally see it being my family 5-10 years from now (minus the gay couple, unless my brother has something to share with us...). But the chaos and craziness and family fighting (which is completely different from any other type of fighting) and the boyfriend/girlfriend judging, those things are totally us. Probably one of the reasons most of us love the movie so much. I bet my mom is just hoping that she has grandkids like that someday
That said, it might bias my opinions slightly. But this is my blog...so I can say whatever I want and you all just have to deal with it, right?? :-)
Sarah Jessica Parker pulls off the uptight outsider very well. In a house like that, you need a certain amount of relaxedness. Don't take things so seriously or freak out when the little niece breaks your heel, because they match a specific outfit. It's super fun to watch that group interact as a family. They all fit into their roles and interact quite realistically as a real, live family.
I never understood why Amy is so mean to her from the start. I mean, I agree that Meredith (Parker) is a little out of place and probably not Everett's type, but that's no reason to be downright horrible to her. But it does show real family problems and realistically! It's a family that's not all lovey-dovey, but has the bum brother, the jerk sister, the successful brother, the grown-up sister with kids, and the brother everyone loves, the mom who shares too much and the dad who takes charge.
The plot just gets more and more complicated, which any family around Christmas can relate to. Everyone trying to get along and failing miserably, Meredith bringing her sister to join them, a serious family illness to deal with, miscommunication and misunderstandings: all things that families go through and this film brings to the screen with great realism. Sometimes family can be meaner than anyone else, just because they know the buttons to push. This family pushes them all...
But families usually find a way to be okay anyway.
Luke Wilson chipped a tooth while filming this movie and asked Diane Keaton to recommend a dentist. Keaton decided to play a joke on him and, when he called the number she had given him, it was actually the number to a psychologist.
The photo that Meredith gives to all of the family members of a pregnant young Sybil is actually a picture of young Diane Keaton. However, Keaton has never been pregnant and the photo was edited to make her look pregnant.
In the movie the character Amy Stone isn't engaged, but in many scenes (best represented in the scene where Amy is opening the gift from Brad), the actress Rachel McAdams is seen having a ring on her left ring finger, possibly an engagement ring since she and Ryan Gosling were still together at the time.