Film Review: The Muppets

The Muppets is a wonderfully enjoyable movie that is unlikely to have many detractors. The film is immensely entertaining for those who remember the Muppets the first time round, as well as for younger viewers.

Walter is the world’s biggest Muppets fan. When his brother Gary takes girlfriend Mary on a trip to Los Angeles, Walter is thrilled at the chance to tag along at visit the Muppet Studios. When he hears that the studio is about to be knocked down by an oil tycoon, it is down to Walter to inform his heroes…

The main reason that The Muppets works so successfully is down to its narrative. It would have been easy for Disney to push out a movie based on these much-loved characters, with little concern regarding the story. Thankfully, The Muppets is well written, with a story that should satisfy all ages. While the premise is quite basic, the story develops with wit and charm.

It is humour, after all, that is key to the appeal of the Muppets. The film contains sufficient slapstick to entertain the youngest viewers, while older audience members are likely to be amused by the references and general wit. There are several jokes throughout about the fact that it is a film, even going as far as to reference the plot points.

Along with the comedy, the more serious moments are well executed. Some of the film’s songs are surprisingly emotional, and balance out the humorous musical numbers. As well as the familiar faces, there are several cameos throughout The Muppets. While some of these are very brief (adding little to the overall film), others are fantastically funny. Jason Segel and Amy Adams make great human companions, bringing as much humour as the Muppets themselves.

Although The Muppet Show was first aired in the 1970s, and the characters at the height of their fame in the late 1970s, the film appears to appeal foremostly to an audience who grew up in the 1980s. There are several references to this period, from the fantastic Eighties Robot and the soundtrack to the allusion to 1984’s The Muppets Take Manhattan. Children of the 1980s should revel in James Bobin’s film.

The Muppets is highly recommended; it is likely to be one of the best feel-good films this year. Viewers should ensure they arrive on time to see the Toy Story short Small Fry beforehand, which is also trememdous fun.