Jason Segel and Nicholas Stoller pitched a Muppets movie to a Walt Disney Studios executive in 2008. The plan was to bring back the Muppets by making an “old-school” movie about them putting on a show to save their studio. People who grew up with The Muppet Show and the first Muppet movies made this movie, and it’s clear that they loved that time and want to honor it. Continue reading The Muppets Movie Review to learn more about the film.
The film follows Walter and his brother Gary (Jason Segel). They grew up watching The Muppet Show and are Muppet enthusiasts. When Gary takes a trip to Los Angeles with his fiancée (Amy Adams), he drags Walter along to explore Muppet Studios. While there, Walter overhears Tex Richman’s (Chris Cooper) plot to acquire and demolish the studio to dig for oil underneath it. Walter takes it upon himself to locate and warn Kermit the Frog, and they then resolve to reassemble the Muppets in order to put on a performance to earn funds to purchase back the studio. The movie is available on gomovies to watch for free.
This film does a lot of things well, including acknowledging the Muppets’ absence in the culture (it had been over ten years since Muppets in Space) and creating a similar second-act structure to the original film’s plot, except in this case, instead of the Muppets meeting for the first time via a road trip, they are reunited. There’s also a scene with Sweetums at the same used car dealership from the original, with a guy dressed in the same outfit Milton Berle wore (one of three clear allusions to the original film).
It’s worth mentioning that the human cast of characters is among the greatest the series has ever seen: Jason Segel is a pleasure, but he can also drop out of focus in favor of his Muppet brother Walter. Amy Adams, who had previously portrayed a Disney princess (Enchanted) and was juggling a career between serious and lighter material by this time, offers some of that Enchanted charm here, along with some funny vocal talents. Chris Cooper, typically associated with serious films like American Beauty and The Town, portrays one of the finest villains in the series, daring to go funny but taking a back seat, delivering just enough to generate drama in the picture. That’s a refreshing change from the last four villains, who were over-the-top or overly prominent. Even Jack Black appears as a prisoner celebrity emcee of the telethon.
This film also brings back the musical with one of the finest songbooks in the film series. The song was composed by The Flight of the Conchords’ Bret McKenzie. It’s perhaps the most consistent songbook since the original, with songs like “Life’s a Happy Song,” “Pictures in My Head,” “Me Party,” and the Oscar-winning “Man or Muppet.” There are two montages to ‘Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard’ and ‘We Built This City,’ as well as Muppet stage performances of ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ and ‘Fuck You.’ It’s the first time a Muppets film has included both original and non-original music, yet the latter work well without being intrusive or seeming out of place with the rest of the picture.
The Muppets is a great movie; you’ll have difficulty finding a better one this holiday season. After being out of the focus for too long, this movie shows how much we could all use some Muppets in our lives. This is one of the series’ greatest and most successful films. It received great critical acclaim and a whopping $165 million at the box office.