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Noelle is the First Thing I Watched When Disney+ Launched: Here’s My Review

Disney+ launched with a brand new Christmas movie. See what I think of this original story in my Noelle movie review and parent’s guide. 

Last week I screened lots of original Disney+ shows and while I loved most of them, one movie I was hoping to see was not on the screener list. 

So the moment I got all logged in on my shiny new Disney+ account, I eagerly pushed play on the Disney+ original Christmas movie, Noelle. 

Noelle stars Anna Kendrick and Bill Hader and I couldn’t wait to see it. Did it live up to my expectations? Well, yes and no. 

About Noelle

Synopsis: In Disney+’s holiday comedy “Noelle,” Kris Kringle’s daughter is full of Christmas spirit and holiday fun, but wishes she could do something “important” like her beloved brother Nick, who will take over for their father this Christmas. When Nick is about to crumble like a gingerbread cookie from all the pressure, Noelle suggests he take a break and get away…but when he doesn’t return, Noelle must find her brother and bring him back in time to save Christmas.

noelle poster

The first thing I noticed about Noelle was its striking resemblance to my favorite Christmas movie, elf. I knew this could be potentially problematic because it’s hard not to compare the two.

But they are both good in their own ways. 

Elf definitely had the better laughs, but Noelle made me cry the happiest tears. So my first word of warning is not to get caught in the elf/Noelle comparison trap. Enjoy the movie for what it is.

Noelle Movie Review

Overall, this is a sweet Christmas movie to add to my watchlist. It’s not going into my top ten, but I still enjoyed it.

The sets were fun, the characters were endearing and the message of love and listening to each other was enough to give me that boost of Christmas spirit I’m always looking for this time of year. 

Noelle set

Anna Kendrick was definitely the star of this movie and she did a great job. That said, the supporting cast was just as good.

Shirley MacLaine’s Elf Polly was great for comic relief and Kingsley Ben-Adir as Jake added a great layer to the story. 

Noelle - Shirley MacLaine

That said, I wanted more Bill Hader! He is such a great actor and I was really looking forward to watching him. Ultimately though, he wasn’t onscreen for most of the movie and I have to admit to a bit of disappointment there. 

It was sweet to see the brother/sister relationship between Nick and Noelle, but there was something missing for me and I still haven’t put my finger on it. 

Patty and I chatted about this one on our latest Now Streaming Disney Plus podcast if you want to give us a listen!


Noelle - Bill Hader

Noelle Parent’s Guide

I didn’t see anything to deter families from watching Noelle together this holiday season. Just know that it’s an unconventional Santa story that may bring up some questions for those younger ones who still believe. 

I loved the exclamations like, “oh my garland!” and “that’s so jolly” instead of the typical rougher phrases we might hear in other movies

Overall, this one is a solid 7 for me. It was cute and different enough to be worth the watch even if I wasn’t wowed. Noelle is like a warm cookie. Simple and sweet in all the right places. 

Have you watched Noelle yet? What did you think? 

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