Watch Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas
- 1 hr 39 min
Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas is a heartwarming holiday film that premiered in 2021, serving as a festive continuation of the beloved NBC series, Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist. It captures the essence of the holiday season by wrapping the whimsy and emotional depth of the series into a feature-length special, complete with the enchanting musical numbers that fans have come to adore. The movie unites the familiar faces from the show and invites the audience to rejoin Zoey Clarke and her friends and family for a Christmas that's anything but ordinary.
Following the series finale, the film centers around Jane Levy's character, Zoey Clarke, as she navigates the complexities of her first holiday season without her beloved father. Zoey is a whip-smart computer coder who, in the series, discovers she possesses the inexplicable ability to hear the innermost thoughts and desires of those around her—expressed through pop songs that only she can hear. This peculiar gift, which she initially regards as a curse, turns out to be an extraordinary empathetic tool that she uses to forge deeper connections with the people in her life.
Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas brings us back into the fold of Zoey’s life as she attempts to create a memorable Christmas experience for her family, aiming to uphold their traditions and honor the memory of her father. The responsibility weighs on her as she tries to ensure that everyone has the perfect day, all while the miraculous jukebox in her mind continues to operate, offering her musical insights into her loved ones' emotional states.
The film also sees the return of Skylar Astin as Max, Zoey's charming and endearing best friend and love interest with whom she shares a complicated history and undeniable chemistry. Through music and heartfelt discussions, their relationship continues to evolve as they each grapple with their own issues and aspirations.
Alex Newell reprises the role of Mo, Zoey’s genderfluid neighbor, and confidant, who is known for a larger-than-life personality and a voice to match. Mo's relationship with Zoey is both supportive and honest, often grounding Zoey when the melodies in her world become too overwhelming. Mo provides not just comedic relief but heartfelt wisdom as well, showcasing their own personal growth alongside Zoey.
Zoey's family dynamics remain a vital part of the story, with her mother Maggie, played by Mary Steenburgen, demonstrating strength and vulnerability as she, too, tries to navigate the holiday season without her husband. Meanwhile, Zoey's brother David, portrayed by Andrew Leeds, and his wife, Emily, depicted by Alice Lee, bring their own humor and struggles into the holiday mix, together finding a way to support Zoey and balance their family's changing dynamics.
The movie is as much about the music as it is about the narrative arcs of its characters. True to the series' form, each musical number performed by the talented cast is beautifully choreographed and woven seamlessly into the storyline, illuminating the characters' internal conflicts and joys. From spontaneous, heart-lifting group numbers to intimate, soulful solos, the range of performances reflects the spectrum of emotions that the holiday season can evoke.
From a production standpoint, Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas retains the visual flair of the show, with vivid colors, dynamic camera work, and settings that range from the cozy to the spectacular. The soundtrack features a mix of Christmas classics and contemporary hits, reinterpreted through the expressive lens of the characters' experiences. Fans of the series will appreciate the continuity in style and tone, while newcomers can enjoy the whimsical yet relatable representation of a modern family's Christmas, underscored by the universal language of music.
Beyond the song and dance, the film addresses themes of grief, hope, love, and the importance of connection. In a time when many have experienced loss and upheaval, the movie serves as a comforting reminder of the power of traditions, the resilience of the human spirit, and the undeniable magic infused in sharing joyous moments with loved ones.
Director Richard Shepard, who has worked on several episodes of the series, ensures that Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas is a smooth transition from the small screen to a standalone special, capturing the essence of what made the series so unique while crafting a festive chapter that maintains its charm and emotional resonance.
All in all, Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas is an uplifting holiday film that is bound to delight existing fans of the series while easily drawing in new viewers with its infectious musical numbers, touching narrative, and a heartfelt celebration of holiday spirit and familial bonds.
Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas is a 2021 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 39 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2.