Director: James Bobin
Original Release: 2014
Choice: Our Girl's
My Overall Rating: 4 stars out of 5
|via Muppet Wiki
Fresh off the set of their last film, our furry, felted friends set off on a world tour at the urging of sketchy promoter, Dominick Badguy (Ricky Gervais). Dominick is actually an international thief who goes by the name of "The Lemur." He is in cahoots with Constantine, an even more notorious criminal who has just escaped from a Siberian gulag and happens to look just like Kermit the Frog apart from a black mole on his face. Constantine pulls a switcheroo and sends Kermie off to the tundra while he takes over the variety show. Naturally, Constantine and Dominick are planning a major heist which requires extensive European train travel.
The previous movie in the series, entitled simply The Muppets, earned high praise for recapturing the spirit of the franchise. But I actually think this latest offering did a better job of it. The act which toured Europe had the crazy, edge-of-disaster feel of the old show and there were numerous homages to the first three films. There were even a few clips from the original TV series. Just hearing Jim Henson's voice again was transporting for this sentimental fool. The human cast, led by Gervais, Ty Burrell and Tina Fey, was well into the spirit of the affair. Musical highlights include "The Muppet Show Theme" performed in Spanish and "Together Again," a reworking of the song from The Muppets Take Manhattan.
I am biased. I'd likely give a Muppet movie a 4 even if it were terrible. Even so, I think this one's well worth the trouble. Neither the Muppets nor Sesame Street will ever be the same as the Henson days again but I'm happy to see the spirit live on. The movie has been a box office disappointment so who knows if we can expect more in the coming years?