56 user 35 critic

Noel (2004)

PG | | Drama | 26 November 2004 (Italy)
Five New Yorkers come together on Christmas Eve, seeking a miracle.


Chazz Palminteri


David Hubbard

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Susan Sarandon ... Rose Collins
Paul Walker ... Mike Riley
Penélope Cruz ... Nina Vasquez (as Penelope Cruz)
Alan Arkin ... Artie
Marcus Thomas ... Jules Calvert
Sonny Marinelli ... Dennis
Daniel Sunjata ... Marco
Chazz Palminteri ... Arizona
Rob Daly ... Paul
John Doman ... Dr. Baron
Billy Porter ... Randy
Carmen Ejogo ... Dr. Batiste
Donna Hanover ... Debbie Carmichael
Merwin Mondesir ... Glenn
Una Kay Una Kay ... Helen


Christmas Eve in New York, and the lonely divorced publisher, Rose Collins, needs a miracle to improve the health of her mother, interned in a hospital with Alzheimers. She feels sorry for another patient and meets his visitor. Meanwhile, Nina Vasquez breaks her engagement with her beloved fiancé Mike due to his suffocating jealousy, but misses him. Mike is stalked by a stranger, bartender Artie Venzuela. The poor Jules arranges to spend Christmas Eve in the hospital, where he spent the best Christmas of his life when he was a teenager. The lives of some of these characters cross with others along the night. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Miracles are closer than you think



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sensuality, thematic material and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



USA | Canada



Release Date:

26 November 2004 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Noel See more »

Filming Locations:

Montréal, Québec, Canada See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Was released into a 48-hour trial DVD after its theatrical release. See more »


When Rose enters her office, she hangs up her red beret on a coat hanger. She hangs her jacket up on the same hanger, and as she walks to her desk the beret falls off. However, after she has sat down at her desk, the beret appears back on the coat hanger. See more »


Charlie: You saved me Rose. I was wondering where God was and then the next thing you know, there you are at the bedside of a complete stranger telling him you love him was such meaning. And then I knew God was there in that room, with you.
See more »


References One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) See more »


Good King Wenceslas
Written by John M. Neale and Thomas Helmore
Performed, Arranged and Lyrics by Arthur Holden
See more »

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User Reviews

Touching moments, mostly worthwhile and well done
12 December 2014 | by vchimpanzeeSee all my reviews

In New York City, Rose is a children's book editor who has never had children and divorced her husband years ago, though when she meets a former friend she tries to claim she is happy with a Wall Street big shot and twin daughters Brittany and Ashley. The truth is she tries to care for everyone else but herself and she needs a relationship ... well, actually, people tell her she needs more than that. Her co-worker Marco might be able to provide her with what she needs, but she doesn't see him that way.

Mike and Nina are engaged but Mike, a cop, is suspicious and controlling, though not abusive. Nina is gorgeous and cares a lot about her large family.

Marcus had a terrible childhood and he gets by committing crimes. What he wants is a nice Christmas but the only time he ever had Christmas was when his abusive father beat him up and put him in the hospital. So he goes to the hospital hoping he can participate in the activities. Told he has to be a patient, he takes desperate measures.

Rose's mother has Alzheimer's and can't remember her, but she is dedicated and visits anyway. Across the hall is a comatose patient who never seems to get visitors, so she decides to be nice and visit the person. Quietly sitting there is a mysterious and kind man played by Robin Williams. Is he an angel? I'm not going to say. All I will say is that he and Rose help each other feel better.

Rose and Nina also interact and as a result, Rose ends up spending time with Nina's wonderful family.

Meanwhile, Mike and his partner on the force encounter Artie, who works in a restaurant where they eat. He lost his wife years ago and recognizes that Mike likes many of the same things his wife did. Could he be Mike's long-lost father? No, it's actually much weirder than that, and Artie and Mike end up spending time together, which is not entirely positive.

This is not always a pleasant movie, but it does have some touching moments and great performances. Susan Sarandon does such a good job, showing a very caring attitude, and putting on a good front when the truth her character is miserable. Penelope Cruz has such a positive attitude for what she is going through.

Alan Arkin also shows his talent.

And Robin Williams is amazing as always. He isn't that funny here but he has an ability for pleasant drama. Especially after what just happened to him, it's nice to see him as a man of faith and to hope Williams really did believe in something.

The storyline about Marcus I could have done without. He doesn't seem to interact with the others but merely happens to be in the same room at one point.

Is this a family movie? I wouldn't recommend it for kids, but it has some of the qualities of a holiday family drama. It just reminds us all too much that not everyone has happy holidays, while showing how we can make each other's lives better. And someone forgot to bleep the s-word a couple of times. I don't know whether this means everyone hears it or someone was supposed to be monitoring the movie as it aired. The sound did go out a couple of times later.

It's worth seeing if you don't mind being depressed before you feel better.

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