Gretchen Mol stops by 'Entertainment Weekly: The Show' to chat about Patrick's awkward reunion dinner with his mother

By Rachel DeSantis
February 16, 2017 at 05:11 PM EST

Sometimes, not even a mother’s love can alleviate the pain of an awkward family dinner. Gretchen Mol knew what you were thinking going into her dinner scene in Manchester By the Sea, where her character Elise was reunited with her son Patrick: How bad could this really be?

But, as she explains during an appearance on Entertainment Weekly: The Show, “You just immediately think, ‘He can’t live here, he can’t live with this woman and her new husband!’ It’s awfully sad, but it has something that I think makes audiences laugh a little bit and sort of know they’ve stepped into rooms like that before, where you feel like you need to get right back and go in the other direction.”

During the meeting in question, Patrick finally meets with his absentee mother following his father’s death, only to find the home she shares with new husband Jeffrey (Matthew Broderick) doesn’t quite fit him into the equation.

Watch the video above to hear Mol’s thoughts, and to see a clip from the movie. Catch the full episode of Entertainment Weekly: The Show, available now, on the new People/Entertainment Weekly Network (PEN). Go to, or download the free app on your Smart TV, mobile and web devices.