23 ene. 2012

My Review: The Muppets (8/10)

¨Am I a Muppet, or am I a man? If I'm a man, I'm a Muppet of a man. ¨

James Bobin was perhaps barely known for his work as a writer in TV series such as Da Ali G Show and The Flight of the Conchords, but after his direction in his first feature film, The Muppets, he will be recognized and remembered for bringing back the 70`s film and TV series back to life. Bobin has accomplished what I thought in today`s advanced technological world couldn`t be done: bring back the Muppets to popular mainstream and make them stars all over again. This film was a very pleasant surprise and didn’t just work only as a nostalgic piece, but it also managed to convert new fans with some catchy songs and great cameos. Whoever thought the Muppets were done and over with was wrong, because they`ve really made millions of new fans and there movie was on par with their greatest shows in the eighties. Seeing these characters back in the big screen without any use of animated effects and just being their old selves was such a great feeling. It allowed for a better story to be told and not just rely on the special effects like so many animated films do now a day. The spirit of Jim Henson is still alive and he would`ve been pleased with this latest effort. One of the reasons this film worked so well was thanks to the funny script which was written by Jason Segel (who also stars in this film) and Nicholas Stoller. Segel had already proven to be a great writer when he wrote the hilarious Forgetting Sarah Marshall. At the end of that film we came to know about his characters passion for directing a Muppet opera. Perhaps it is really a dream of his and he got close to achieving it with this film. The question I`ll have to ask Segel is if he is a Muppet or a man.

Gary (Jason Segel) and Walter (muppet voiced by Peter Linz) have been very close since they were born. The two brothers always spend time together and one of their favorite hobby`s is watching The Muppets on television. Walter admires the muppets and dreams of meeting them, and one day Gary decides to take him to their Theater in Los Angeles. Gary is actually going to LA to celebrate his tenth year together with girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams), but he convinces Mary to let Walter come with them. Once they arrive at the Museum, they are torn to see the place abandoned and no muppet in sight. While Walter is touring Kermit`s old office he overhears a conversation an oil tycoon named Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) is having, saying that he is going to buy the abandoned theater and extract oil from under the sacred place. Walter is terrified after hearing this and decides to search for Kermit in order to let him know about Richman`s evil plans. The only way to save the theater is to come up with ten million dollars before the end of the week. Gary, Mary, and Walter find Kermit and tell him they still have time to come up with the money if the Muppets get back together and raise the money. That is when Kermit begins enlisting every one of the muppets one by one and preparing a lived telecast show to raise the money. Veronica Martin (Rashida Jones) decides to produce the show despite believing the Muppets are history because their hottest show got cancelled and they need something to cover the hole, but she says they will need a star to host the show. The Muppets find Jack Black and convince him (by kidnapping him) to do it against his will. Thus the show begins and the race against the clock to raise the money.

The comedy along with the musicals in The Muppets work to perfection. I loved every one of the songs in this movie, and Kermit`s single was so good. Jason Segel and Amy Adams have a special chemistry together. Adams reminds us why we fell in love with Enchanted and Jason Segel plays his useful loveable self. It was such a nostalgic feeling to see The Muppets back in action, but they were great as always. Kermit, Miss Piggy, Gonzo, Animal, Fozzie, Beaker, Rowlf, and company were all spectacular. These are the characters I grew up with so it was really something to see them together once again in such a well written and entertaining movie. Perhaps the weakest part was the villain; Chris Cooper is a great actor but his character was a little over the top. The best part of the film in my opinion was the cameos. I absolutely loved each one of them, but I don’t want to give away any surprises. My favorite was the cameo from the ¨Am I a Muppet or a Man¨ song. This is a movie for everyone, fans of the old series and young kids will enjoy this alike. The Muppets is one of the pleasant surprises from 2011. It`s definitely worth a watch.

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