The Best ‘Muppets’ Movie since… well, the last one!
“The sequel’s never quite as good,” Kermit and friends sing as Muppets Most Wanted begins. Whereas 2011’s reboot The Muppets was a delightful mix of nostalgia, tenderness and heart, Muppets Most Wanted gets the gang back to their wacky roots with a full-out screwball comedy with big stars and clever gags. It may not have as much heart, but it may be just as funny.
This time around, the Muppets take their show on the road with a European world tour. Hilarity ensues. I admit I’m a huge fan of the Muppets. There’s something infectious, joyous, and enchanting about watching this group of puppeted friends joke, sing, dance, and stumble through life together. I laughed out loud on multiple occasions, and Most Wanted features a surprising amount of intricate gags and pop culture jokes for more mature audiences.
With any other film, I would probably complain about the exorbitant amount of celebrity cameos—but here it’s in keeping with the original spirit of the Muppets. The whole appeal of the original The Muppet Show was watching these hilarious puppets interacting with famous celebrities. Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey, and Ty Burrell do their best to make up for the lack of Jason Segal, and they (mostly) pull it off.
Muppets Most Wanted isn’t perfect, and some gags just work better than others. Whereas 2011’s The Muppets seemed like an effortless entrance back into the world of Jim Henson’s creations, Muppets Most Wanted feels like it’s trying harder to keep the magic alive—it succeeds, but it does show its efforts at some points in the story.
+ Entertaining throughout
+ Great to see all the Muppets getting screentime
+ The ogre Sweetums slow-dances with Christoph Waltz. This is not something you just see everyday.
+ Incredibly self-referential
+ Catchy new songs
+ Hilarious celebrity cameos
+ A great emphasis on the importance of family
Muppets Most Wanted is a delightful, funny, and clever sequel to the superior The Muppets. While it doesn’t reach the majestic heights of its predecessor, the movie returns the Muppets back to their wacky roots– full of hilarious jokes, funny songs, and great celebrity cameos. It’s mostly everything one could want in a Muppets movie.
© Matt Tory, 2014.