Friday, 18 April 2014

Film Review: "Muppets Most Wanted" (2014)

“You mean all this time I've been trapped in a Russian Gulag, no one, not one single person from the Muppets, except Animal, noticed I'd been replaced by an evil criminal mastermind?” Which is what the Muppets bring this time around with Muppets Most Wanted. This American musical comedy caper film produced and released by Walt Disney Pictures. Directed by James Bobin, the film is the eighth theatrical film featuring the Muppets and is a sequel to 2011's The Muppets. In the film, the Muppets find themselves, while on a grand world tour, unwittingly involved in a European jewl-heist/crime caper headed by a Kermit the Frog look-alike and his dastardly sidekick.

The film was a breezy, mirthful caper enlivened by the comic talents of Ricky Gervais, Ty Burrell, Tina Fey the Muppets cast and its celebrity cameos. It was nice to see celebrity cameos such as Tony Bennett, Jemaine Clement, Celine Dion, Lady Gaga, Zach Galifianakis, Josh Groban, Salma Hayek, Tom Hiddleston, Frank Langella, Ray Liotta, Ross Lynch, James McAvoy, Chole Grace Moretz, Usher Raymond, Miranda Richardson, Saoirse Ronan, Danny Trejo, Stanley Tucci and Christoph Waltz, to name some. The performances in this film were hilarious, most of the laughs come courtesy of Tina Fey, in the role of a Siberian prison guard who can't/won't stop dancing. In addition, the Muppets once again did what they do best: put on a grand show.

It's not quite as sharp as The Muppets (2011), but Muppets Most Wanted is still a smart, delightfully old-fashioned tale that follows the formula established by the first film -- a madcap adventure assisted by a huge group of human stars. The plot of the movie has been seen before. However, everything in the film was enjoyable and Kermit and Miss Piggy finally solve their long-lasting relationship crisis. It’s another unexpected treat. The film effortlessly blends wised-up, self-reflective humor with old-fashioned let's-put-on-a-show pizzazz like its predecessor. Another mostly winning return for childhood favorites from a prior century that looks to accomplish its goal of pleasing old fans and winning new ones like The Muppets. The film has the same brilliant absurdity, anarchic humor, subtle uplift and ensemble comedy that fans have come to expect over the years. For those of us who've had Muppets in our memory since childhood, or the 2011 film, will find ourselves in a state of contentment. The result is refreshing on every level, a piece of nostalgia so old it's new again, and a breather from Hollywood's 3-D digital onslaught in favor of fur and fuzz. It’s much more than just an affectionate reimagining of familiar Muppets routines, but it is rooted in real emotions and characters, and that they remain as committed as ever to doing what Muppets do best: putting on a grand show. To conclude, it’s enjoyable outing with bouncy songs, a terrific ensemble cast and cameos and with nice use of various locations.

Simon says Muppets Most Wanted receives:

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