MUPPETS MOST WANTED
MOVIE: **** (out of 5)
BLU-RAY EXPERIENCE: *** (out of 5)
Kermit the Frog as HIMSELF
Miss Piggy as HERSELF
Fozzie Bear as HIMSELF
Gonzo the Great as HIMSELF
Sam Eagle as HIMSELF
Animal as HIMSELF
Ricky Gervais as DOMINIC BADGUY
Ty Burrell as JEAN PIERRE NAPOLEON
Tina Fey as NADYA
Directed by: James Bobin
BY KEVIN CARR
I have to confess that while I enjoyed 2011’s “The Muppets,” I had a lot more fun watching “Muppets Most Wanted.” That’s not to say the first return to the big screen for the Muppets was a bad film. It wasn’t, and it was perfectly charming for what it was. However, it was more about the human stars (Jason Segel and Amy Adams) than it was about the actual Muppet characters.
It’s kind of a shame that this sequel “Muppets Most Wanted” was less of a success because it really brought the focus back on the beloved characters we’ve known for years. Like “The Great Muppet Caper” back in the 80s, this sequel is goody and silly, playing more off the satirical nature of the original “The Muppet Show.” In many ways, its far smarter than the first film, though probably sacrifices a bit of the heart at the same time.
However, for me, “Muppets Most Wanted” was a thrilling success. The story follows Kermit and the gang getting their careers back on track. However, when Kermit is thrown into jail as the evil frog Constantine, the Muppets have to find a way to get him back.
The greatest moments in this film are when the Muppets break out their well-known self-referential humor. There’s an attempt to play up a real story that pretends to be a huge blockbuster movie, but ultimately it’s a series of gags in which the Muppets fumble over each other. That’s the essence of Muppet entertainment to me.
Also brilliant are the actor cameos and bit parts. Ricky Gervais plays the bad guy in the film while Tina Fey plays the eastern European prison warden. They both have a strong presence in the film, but they don’t try to steal the show from the non-human characters. Similarly, Ty Burrell plays opposite Sam the Eagle as his INTERPOL counterpart, which is a lot of fun. Additionally, the cameos you’ll see in the jail – as well as most everywhere else in the film – bring back the spirit of the old Muppet movies.
I’d love to see Disney make more of these theatrical Muppet movies, but I’m not sure if that’s going to happen considering this one’s lower box office. If they could only find a way to cross over the Marvel or Star Wars characters, and we might just have something…
While it looks great, like most Disney Blu-rays, the package is a little thin. It does include the DVD and Digital Copy along with the Blu-ray, which is nice for family viewing. The bonus features include a music video of “I’ll Get You What You Want” as well as “The Longer Longest Blooper Reel in Muppet History” to outdo the previous one from the last film. There’s also “Rizzo’s Biggest Fan” which spotlights a hidden camera on Rizzo the Rat’s attempt to increase his family.
More creatively, there are three versions of the film included on the disc: the theatrical cut, the 12-minute-longer extended cut and the Statler and Waldorf cut (which must be seen rather than explained).