I’m thrilled that one of my favorite Christmas movies is available on DVD for the first time from Warner Brothers. It is the Emmy-award winning The Gathering and it stars Ed Asner and Maureen Stapleton as the long-separated parents of adult children. He is a wealthy man who has devoted his life to his business. He asks her for help in bringing the family together for Christmas because he has learned that he is dying and this will be his last chance to see them. It has been digitally re-mastered for this DVD edition. The sequel, “Gathering II,” is also available on DVD but has not been re-mastered.
I am very fond of these holiday family gathering drama with old tensions and insecurities revived as family members gather for the holidays and this is one of the best. Every member of the family has some issue to resolve and the performances are exceptional, especially the brilliant Stapleton, who shows us her character’s strength and vulnerability. This is a bittersweet classic of the season.