Tuesday, May 02, 2006

NOEL (2004)

Disconnect. That's how I would describe this 2004 movie directed by Chazz Palminteri and written by David Hubbard. The movie would be better if it centered on one story rather than three, or was it five. The DVD jacket says, "As five strangers' lives intertwine on Christmas eve, a story of companionship, love and healing unfolds." Only two stories really intertwine, that's the one where Paul Walker's character Mike loses his fiance (Penelope Cruz) because of his jealousy and he learns a lesson about love from Alan Arkin, who lost his wife because of his jealous rage. On another front, Susan Sarandon's character Rose meets Robin Williams (the dying Charlie) and her life is changed. (Susan Sarandon spends most her time walking the streets of Manhatten.) And then there is this completely wild story of a fellow (Marcus Thomas) who breaks his hand to get admitted to emergency because his best Christmas ever happened in an ER. One could easily get lost trying to follow the characters and plot that move back and forth, but seldom intertwine.

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