Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Muppets

I'm not sure why I was hesitant to see The Muppets. I LOVED The Muppet Show, and would watch it every day after kindergarten.  My sister and I had Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy dolls, and she even took the Kermit the Frog doll with her when she had to go to surgery once as a kid. My favorite lunch pail was, of course, a Muppet Show lunch pail.  Muppet Babies were a staple of Saturday mornings. I've seen the original Kermit the Frog in the Smithsonian (Museum of American History), and made it a point to have my picture taken with him. But I was scared. Scared that The Muppets might not be worth my time, wouldn't be that enjoyable, or that maybe I had outgrown the idea of the Muppets entertaining me.  I was wrong.

You can't help but smile the entire time you're watching The Muppets.  The film introduces a new Muppet to the fold - Walter - who needs a guiding force in his life.  He finds that force in the love he develops for the Muppet crew and Muppet Show culture.  When he gets the chance to go to L.A. with his brother (Jason Segel) and his brother's fiancee (Amy Adams), he can't believe it. A scheduled tour of Muppet Studios turns into a disaster as they quickly realize the place where the magic used to happen is deserted, dilapidated and nearly ruined.  Walter sneaks into Kermit's old office and overhears a meeting with a businessman who plans to buy Muppet Studios, bulldoze it, and seize the oil that's supposedly underneath the land.  This leads to a reunion of the Muppet crew, who plan a telethon to raise money to keep the studios from being bought.  Once they start cleaning, practicing and planning the show, the crew quickly realizes the magic of the Muppets never died.  At the same time, Jason Segel's character must balance his love and support for his brother with the effect these escapades are having on his relationship with Amy Adams's character.

Man, did I love this! The musical numbers are cheesy, but awesome. I fully expect some Best Original Song nominations to come from this.  It perfectly employs classic movie cliches, including two EPIC 80's-style montage sequences. That's what's so great about this movie.  It's not afraid to be silly.  It's not afraid to be heartwarming.  It's well-written.  It's accessible, even if you know nothing about the Muppets.  Plus, Amy Adams and Jason Segel are great, which doesn't hurt one bit.  Don't be surprised if this gets a Golden Globe nomination for Best Picture, Musical or Comedy.

This is a very funny movie, and you'll enjoy it.  I don't care how old you are or how young you are - go.  Go now.  Until then, check out two of the songs you could very easily see nominated for Best Original Song at the Oscars:

"Life's a Happy Song"

"Man or Muppet"

Image Courtesy of Disney, 2011. All Rights Reserved.

1 comment:

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