Pieces of April

User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 70 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 60 out of 70
  2. Negative: 4 out of 70

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User Reviews

  1. BrendaK.
    Apr 2, 2005
    9
    I liked this movie a lot more than I thought I would. It grows on you and is so poignant. If you have any disfunctionality in your family at all you will "get" this movie.
  2. Maximus
    Nov 15, 2004
    10
    Wicked Awesome.
  3. JudithM.
    Aug 3, 2007
    10
    One of the best movies I've seen all year!
  4. ChadS.
    Nov 17, 2003
    7
    Does unconditional love apply if a mother can't conjure one happy memory of her daughter when the family unit was a whole? Nobody can. A relationship this ruined deserves a more thoughtful reconciliation than showing old wounds being healed set to music during a thanksgiving dinner montage. There's so much versimilitude during that road trip, you wonder why the filmmaker Does unconditional love apply if a mother can't conjure one happy memory of her daughter when the family unit was a whole? Nobody can. A relationship this ruined deserves a more thoughtful reconciliation than showing old wounds being healed set to music during a thanksgiving dinner montage. There's so much versimilitude during that road trip, you wonder why the filmmaker didn't go the distance, and resolve the seemingly unresolvable. April, according to (a wonderful)Clarkson, sounds like a borderline psychopath, and she has the gall to make the family come to her. "Pieces of April" succeeds because it shows a family's bravery in dealing with a terminal illness with the right proportion of humor and pathos. Patricia Clarkson is terrific, but so is Alison Pill, as the younger daughter, who puts on her happy face for mom in heartbreaking fashion. "Pieces of April" is very good, but misses its chance to be great. Expand
  5. NadaD.
    Oct 17, 2003
    10
    Laugh-out loud funny.
  6. UnbearableLightness
    Dec 10, 2003
    9
    Even though I am a huge fan of What's Eating Gilbert Grape, I went into the movie with low expectations. I'm not a fan of DV movies and wasn't very impressed with the trailer or premise. Boy was I mistaken. The cast is amazing. The dialog is smart. It makes you feel emotion without using cheap tactics (I might be stretching a little here). Overall, it's a delightful Even though I am a huge fan of What's Eating Gilbert Grape, I went into the movie with low expectations. I'm not a fan of DV movies and wasn't very impressed with the trailer or premise. Boy was I mistaken. The cast is amazing. The dialog is smart. It makes you feel emotion without using cheap tactics (I might be stretching a little here). Overall, it's a delightful holiday film. See it with those you love and those you don't. Expand
  7. BillB.
    Dec 9, 2003
    7
    Warm and poignant and funny. The digital video gives this a dingy look, not altogether inappropriate for a film set in late november. This was a hit at Sundance.
  8. ButteredPopcorn
    Apr 10, 2004
    10
    Very dark yet very funny. this movie falls into one of those 'families - you can't live with them and you can't live without them' genres. The movie is very inventive as a whole, and wonderfully refreshing. It's the most re-freshing movie I've seen so far this year.
  9. StephenS.
    Apr 3, 2004
    7
    Director Peter Hedges? New York tenements are much less the overdesigned, overlit stage props that dominate ?In America,? while the residents are a little more realistic too. Little does her family know that April, the black sheep of the family, now has a black boyfriend. He already knows the good stuff about her that the movie is set to reveal. She?s promised to do the thanksgiving thing Director Peter Hedges? New York tenements are much less the overdesigned, overlit stage props that dominate ?In America,? while the residents are a little more realistic too. Little does her family know that April, the black sheep of the family, now has a black boyfriend. He already knows the good stuff about her that the movie is set to reveal. She?s promised to do the thanksgiving thing for her reluctant family, driving down from upstate New York to the lower East Side. Hedges switches the action backwards and forwards, from the approaching family car to April?s apartment. April, meanwhile, is bounced upstairs and downstairs, desperately seeking a functional oven (and oven-owner) to finish off the turkey. This only looks like a one or two-trick pony, but its sanguine wit and sober humanity enlarge it unexpectedly. Your moral life can only be enriched by making room for pieces like "Pieces of April." Collapse
  10. ChestyB.
    Mar 18, 2004
    10
    Easily this was the most overlooked movie of 2003. It is incredibly funny and emotional. One great performance after another!
  11. JeremyF
    Feb 16, 2008
    8
    Very cute, very good film. I really like it. This is a superb spell-binding from Katie Holmes. (Aw, look at Katie homes pre-Cruise... it's so nice.)
  12. ReilT.
    Nov 11, 2003
    10
    Feel good. Laugh. Think. Sympathize. V entertaining.
  13. tug
    Nov 19, 2004
    2
    Did you all see the same movie as I did? This movie was pathetic. I can't even figure out when it was trying to be funny, and rather than poignant or sober, I found it silly and boring.
Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. 80
    As the debate between digital video and film rages on, Pieces of April proves a point that many people overlook in the DV/film debate. If you have a great story, a great script and a great cast, DV will work as well as film onscreen.
  2. 90
    A film to savor and to be thankful for.
  3. Hedges keeps everything in balance: The sadness and frivolity all seem to be part of the same emotional continuum. He’s made a lingeringly poignant little movie.