Anti-materialist Thanksgiving movie from the Cold War

Master archivist Rick Prelinger sez,

It's 1951, and America fears Communism and the Bomb. Since the Johnsons, a working-class Midwestern family, can't afford a Thanksgiving turkey, they decide to spend an evening writing up what they're thankful for, and share their thoughts around the dinner table.

Unlike almost every other Cold War educational and industrial film, this film doesn't equate freedom and happiness with material things. Made by Centron, the same visionary company that spawned Herk Harvey and his "Carnival of Souls," and written by Margaret "Trudy" Travis, one of the few women creating ephemeral films at the time, it's deeply patriotic, yes, and anti-Communist as well, but it runs counter to many of the Fifties clichés we hold dear.

Download a high-quality version from the Internet Archive and watch it with your family!

A Day of Thanksgiving (1951)