I was amazed at how good The Muppets movie actually was. The film could have been a disaster, especially since you have a younger audience who do not have any nostalgia for the premise of the original show. Not only was the movie good, the 2011 film reinvented the Muppets to appeal to both its target audience (kids) as well and be entertaining for adults who grew up watching the show.
Now that they have the gang all back together, what should they do now? Well, make another movie, of course! But will the sequel reach the heights attained by its predecessor? Well, read this SPOILER-FREE review and find out!
The general plot is, soon after the first movie, The Muppets are sent on a world tour by a promoter named Dominic Badguy (pronounced baegee; it’s French) played by Ricky Gervais. However, the tour is just a cover for Dominic and his partner Constantine, who looks exactly like Kermit the Frog, to travel around the world and commit crimes. They get Kermit arrested and sent to the Gulag with none of the Muppets any wiser.
There are actually three sub-plots in the movie. The main story arc involves Constantine and Dominic attempting to find a way to steal the crown jewels of England. The second one is Kermit forced to manage the annual prison revue by the prison warden, Nadya (played by Tina Fey). The third story involves CIA Officer Sam Eagle and Interpol Agent Jean Pierre Napoleon (played by Ty Burrell) investigating the burglaries throughout Europe.
Each of the stories are interesting but the main story isn’t actually that fun. The humor is there but it isn’t as funny as the other sub-plots. The best one would have to be Sam and Jean Pierre’s story. They appear to have the best jokes and the way Sam’s straight man reacts to Jean Pierre’s bumbling Pink Panther-esque mannerisms works extremely well.
Speaking of the jokes, like in the first movie, I was amazed how well they worked in this film as well. They were, at the least, worthy of a chuckle. Some jokes did work better than others. I’d like to give specific examples but that would spoil them. Needless to say, Muppets Most Wanted is a funny movie. Both adults and kids will enjoy the humor of the film easily.
The Muppets are definitely the stars here but the performance of the human actors are done to perfection. Ricky Gervais’ portrayal of an intelligent criminal who has to play second banana to a somewhat bumbling “mastermind” is funny. Tina Fey does a great job as Nadya (love the obviously fake accent) and Ty Burrell is fantastic as well. I couldn’t find any weak points in their performances so, bravo to the three of them!
They do steal a lot of screentime from the other Muppets. Only Kermit, Miss Piggy and Walter seem to get any significant time on the screen. I really wanted to see a lot more of Gonzo the Great or Beaker. Come to think of it, it’s pretty amazing I treat the Muppets as “people” and not as the inanimate objects they really are. It’s a testament to the writers and puppeteers that they can breathe life into these characters. I’m also glad they didn’t use any CGI (which would have been tempting to do, I’m sure) but doing that would destroy a lot of the Muppet magic that made them so famous in the first place.
What would a Muppet movie be without musical numbers and, boy, does Muppets Most Wanted have a lot of them! I was also amazed by the sheer number of song numbers they had in the film. The song numbers are all good but there was never a catchy tune that stuck out in my mind. There was no “Life’s a Happy Song” or “Man or Muppet.” There wasn’t even “The Rainbow Connection.” It’s not that big of a deal; it’s just disappointing.
Also, if you enjoy cameos, you’re going to love this movie. The Muppets Most Wanted is filled with them! You have Tony Bennett, Lady Gaga, Diddy, Tom Hiddleston, Chloe Grace Moretz and Usher, just to name a few! Some of them just come out of nowhere. I’m kind of afraid this will “age” the movie after a couple of years, though. Fame is fleeting so this movie may be less of a “who’s who” and more of a “where are they now” list in the future. Still, they’re enjoyable to see these stars, even briefly.
Is the Muppets Most Wanted an enjoyable film? Yes, I can definitely recommend it for both young and old. As long as you don’t take things too seriously, you’ll be entertained with the film. It’s a fun movie that can be enjoyed by all ages.
Have you watched Muppets Most Wanted? Did you like it or do you feel the Muppets should have stayed out of the limelight? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.