Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Movie Review: Muppets Most Wanted



Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Laughs, good story, laughs, Muppets, laughs.  Did I mention laughs?
Cons: Well, Constantine starts with “cons”
The Bottom Line:
Familiar story
Hilarious Muppet take
You’ll love this movie




“Looks Like They Put the Reviews Up Early.”  “Or is That the Suggestion Box?”

I was one of the few (it seems) who wasn’t thrilled with the recent attempts to bring back The Muppets franchise, so I didn’t rush out to watch Muppets Most Wanted.  I did, however, go ahead and buy the movie when it first hit Blu-Ray.  And I just got it watched if that tells you anything.  But I am thrilled I bought it and am kicking myself for not watching it sooner because this movie is wonderful.

The movie picks up right after the end of the last one.  Literally.  I mean, it opens with the “The End” fireworks.  Clearly, this means that studio has ordered a sequel.  And as the Muppets brainstorm a plot, they hit on a perfect story and things get under way.

Flushed with the success of their come back (from the last movie), The Muppets have decided to go on an international tour.  They have signed up with Dominic Badguy (it’s French and not pronounced as it looks.  Really!  Would he like to us?) (Oh, and he’s played by Ricky Gervais.) who will help arrange the dates and locations for this tour.  And they start in Europe – Germany to be exact.

However, Constantine, the number 1 villain and world’s most dangerous frog, has managed to escape from the Russian gulag where he’s been held.  He’s a ringer for Kermit the Frog – except for a mole.  As Kermit gets captured in Constantine’s place, Constantine pretends to be Kermit and uses their tour as cover for his evil scheme.  Will anyone realize the switch in time to free Kermit and save the day?

Okay, so it’s not the most original plot, but I didn’t care.  You know why?  I was having so much fun along the way it really didn’t matter.  The action was fast moving and actually held up pretty well with no major plot holes.  Okay, I don’t expect perfection from the Muppets, but still, there wasn’t anything that made me roll my eyes.  There are even some tender moments between the characters as the movie went along.

First and foremost, this movie remembered that it was a comedy, and that’s why I loved it.  The jokes were plentiful and rapid fire.  In fact, I’m sure I missed some as I was laughing at the one that had just come before.  The laughs start with the opening number and continue right until the end.

As always, there are plenty of cameos that added to the fun.  I’ll leave it to you to figure out who appeared.  The main three human stars are Ricky Gervais, Ty Burrell, who plays an inspector that teams up with Sam the Eagle to try to track the mysterious bad guys, and Tina Fey, who plays the chief at the gulag.  The song Tina sings when we first meet her is hysterical.  All three of them are top notch making us believe in the magic of the Muppet world.  The Muppet performers are great as well.  Truly, there isn’t a bad moment in the film.

That includes the songs which never slow things down but always advance the story or provide us with wonderful laughs (usually both).

The Blu-Ray has three versions of the film.  There’s the original theater cut, the Unnecessarily Extended Edition, and the Statler and Waldorf cut.  You’ve already spent longer reading this review than it would take to watch the Statler and Waldorf cut (and I think you).  Still, it’s good for a quick laugh.  And I must take exception to the name of the Unnecessarily Extended Edition.  That’s actually the one I chose to watch.  Afterwards, I watched the opening scene in the theatrical edition.  Some of my favorite jokes in that first scene had been cut for theaters.  Seriously, you need to watch those extra 14 minutes.  You will thank me as the jokes are so funny.

And really, that’s what makes or breaks a Muppet movie or show of any kind.  As I said at the outset, I’m glad I bought Muppets Most Wanted because I will definitely be watching it again.  It’s light, fun entertainment that will leave you laughing.

4 comments:

  1. This has been on my to watch list since it came out because who can resist a combination of Tina Fey and Ricky Gervaise? Plus I think my 4 year old would enjoy it. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed the movie! I'll definitely had to pick this up next time I see it!

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    1. Yes, pick it up and watch it. I think you and four 4 year old will enjoy it very much.

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  2. I went to the theater and saw it. A lot of fun! I enjoy your reviews, Mark. I felt the cast was having a blast, and when the cast is having fun then the audience is too.

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    1. I absolutely agree that when a cast is having fun together, it shows, and we enjoy it more. There's a special magic that comes through when that happens.

      And thanks for telling me you enjoy my reviews. That means a lot.

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