"All Dressed Up with Nowhere to Go"
What You Need To Know:
NOEL has some warm, touching moments but quickly unravels and confuses. The story embodies a cacophony of myth conceptions, including reincarnation, spiritism, angels, references to Christmas, and other non-Christian elements. Although it makes some good moral points at the end, NOEL is not worth the price of a rental or a ticket. What’s worse, it’s supposed to be a Christmas movie, but faith in Jesus Christ has little to do with the movie.
(Pa, B, FR, O, C, Ho, LL, V, S, A, D, M) Eclectic pagan worldview with some moral elements and positive references to reincarnation, angels, spiritism, Christmas, homosexual humor, and self-realization; 10 obscenities and three profanities; policeman shoves man onto Christmas tree, man hires someone to break his own hand, people dying in hospital, people threaten to jump, and more threats of violence; unmarried couple goes to bed (nothing shown), sexual conversations, woman told she needs sex, provocative language, homosexual humor; no nudity, but woman in lingerie; drinking; smoking; and, lying.
NOEL is a strange movie that didn’t last long at the theaters. It’s produced by some Christian friends of MOVIEGUIDE®, but it embodies a cacophony of myth conceptions, as MOVIEGUIDE® editor Tom Snyder would say, including reincarnation, spiritism, angels, and other non-Christian elements. Set on Christmas Eve in New York story, it tells the story of five individuals. And that’s the problem. It skips from one story to another without a cohesive whole.
The three dominant stories are about a policeman named Mike whose jealousy is destroying his relationship with his beautiful fiancé, Nina. The tragic story of Artie, played by Alan Arkin, who killed his wife and her paramour in a jealous rage, helps Mike see where jealousy can lead. Susan Sarandon plays Rose, who has spent her life taking care of other people. Her encounter with the spirit of a dying man, Charlie Boyd, helps her to learn to appreciate herself and focus more on her life and less on the life of her catatonic mother. Robin Williams, who is uncredited in the movie, plays Charlie Boyd.
NOEL has some warm, touching moments, but it quickly unravels and confuses. It is surprising that these actors signed on for this movie. It shows the necessity of having a good script, and the fact that many people cannot recognize a bad script when they see it. Although it makes some good moral points at the end about love being the greatest gift, NOEL is not worth the price of a rental or a ticket. What’s worse, it’s supposed to be a Christmas movie, but faith in Jesus Christ has little to do with the movie.