Bill Murray croons and schmoozes in ‘A Very Murray Christmas’

A Very Murray Christmas is a semi-ironic throwback to old-fashioned TV Christmas variety shows.

Two and a half stars

A Very Murray Christmas Available December 4 on Netflix.

Bill Murray’s best role in the past decade has been that of Bill Murray, Eccentric Celebrity, and he takes that to an extreme in his Netflix Christmas special A Very Murray Christmas. A semi-ironic throwback to old-fashioned TV Christmas variety shows, it features a threadbare narrative setup (Murray is holed up in New York City’s Carlyle Hotel during a blizzard, which has kept all the guests away from his imminent live TV Christmas broadcast) as the excuse for a cavalcade of stars to join Murray in cracking a few jokes and singing some familiar Christmas songs.

Some celebrities (Chris Rock, Miley Cyrus, George Clooney) play themselves, while others (Rashida Jones, Jason Schwartzman, Maya Rudolph and more) play semi-fictional characters, although Murray and collaborators Sofia Coppola and Mitch Glazer aren’t really interested in creating characters. The songs range from the obvious (“Silent Night,” “Do You Hear What I Hear?”) to the offbeat (“Fairytale of New York,” “Santa Claus Wants Some Lovin’”), mostly sung by stars not known for their singing. It’s mildly amusing at times but mainly just wildly self-indulgent. Like Murray’s endearing real-life antics, the show was probably loads of fun for the people involved, but the feeling doesn’t necessarily carry over to the viewing audience.


Josh Bell

Josh Bell is the film editor for Las Vegas Weekly, where he's been writing movie and TV reviews since 2002. ...

Get more Josh Bell
  • The three-day event—which will showcase more than 50 short films, along with one feature—kicks off with a free night of films at Backstage Bar and ...

  • Returning to the Palms, LVFF 2018 offers talked-about indie films shorts programs, animation, student films, parties and more.

  • Solo: A Star Wars Story opens Valleywide on May 25.

  • Get More Film Stories
Top of Story