Sing is exactly the type of holiday joy you need right now.
The good and not-so-good events of this year definitely tested our morale over the past 12 months, but one way to boost those spirits in these final days of 2016 is with a film that will bring you pure joy from start to finish. Sing just hit theaters in the U.S. on December 21st, and the film has already been a hit amongst fans and critics alike, even scoring a Golden Globe nomination for Best Animated Feature Film.
But what makes this movie musical a standout from the rest? We’ve chosen five moments from Sing that you just can’t miss, and will make you sing its praises for years to come.
1. Stevie Wonder and Ariana Grande’s Epic Duet: Since the film centers around a singing competition with animal contestants, there are more than 85 songs that are covered from start to finish. But “Faith” is an original song that’s only heard in the end credits, and features the vocal stylings of soul legend Stevie Wonder and pop diva Ariana Grande. The track is a perfect blend of their genres, and leaves you both tapping your toes and feeling inspired. Co-written by One Repiublic‘s Ryan Tedder, Benny Blanco and Francis Farewell Starlite, the trio landed Sing its second Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Song.
2. Everything About Lizard Assistant Miss Crawley: Sing has its fair share of funny scenes throughout the film, but the standout performance is by a lizard named Miss Crawley, an elderly assistant to theater owner Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey). And who just so happens to have a tendency to lose her one fake eyeball. Totally normal. Fun fact: Miss Crawley is not voiced by a woman, but rather by Garth Jennings, who happens to be both the director and writer of Sing.
3. Rosita and Gunther Team Up For Piggy Power: Reese Witherspoon voices the character of Rosita the pig, a mom of 25 piglets who had to put aside her dreams of becoming a singer in order to care for her family. She decides to try out for Buster Moon’s singing competition but ends up being paired with a German glory hog, voiced by comedian Nick Kroll. Their unlikely pairing makes for a hilarious audition when they take on Taylor Swift ‘s “Shake It Off” – but they regain their pride later in the film when they get a second shot to shake it once again.
4. Matthew McConaughey Takes On Carly Rae Jepsen: In the movie, Buster is merely the head honcho of the singing contest, and not a singer at all, much like Simon Cowell was to American Idol (except way less harsh). So when Buster attempts to convince punk rock porcupine Ash (Scarlett Johansson) she should sing the beloved pop song “Call Me Maybe”, it’s as wonderfully awkward and funny as you think it is. Who would’ve ever thought we’d get to hear Matthew cover Carly Rae Jepsen? What a time to be alive.
5. The Final Countdown: If there’s one thing fans and critics can’t stop talking about, it’s the last 30 minutes of Sing, when the movie’s grand finale turns into an animated rock show. All the contestants get a chance to prove they deserve to have their own time in the spotlight, and we get to see hit after hit from the likes of Witherspoon, Johansson, and breakout star Tori Kelly, who voices Meena, an elephant who struggles to cope with her intense stage fright. The last scene will make you leave the theater singing and uplift your spirits just in time for the peak of the holiday season.
(E! News and Universal Pictures are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)