Saturday 22 March 2014

Review: Muppets Most Wanted

World of Blackout Film Review

Muppets Most Wanted Poster

Muppets Most Wanted
Cert: U / 113 mins / Dir. James Bobin
WoB Rating: 4/7

There's a moment in the opening musical number of Muppets Most Wanted where an arch comment is made about sequels usually not being as good as their predecessors. This glint of self-awareness is about as clever as the film gets, unfortunately, and everything that follows only serves to underline the point. It's not that the movie is bad at all, but it's certainly lacking the spark that can make the Muppets so much fun to watch.

And that, for me, is the main problem I had: for all the mayhem, singing, shouting and general slapstick, I wasn't feeling the fun. The plot, revolving around a Kermit-lookalike and a series of art/jewel robberies, often feels lazy, as do a lot of the performances. There are chucklesome gags and strong setpieces, but it's not go-to-the-cinema-for material. Outside of Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey and Ty Burrell's plot-specific parts, there are a myriad cameo appearances which you get the impression are the result of beleaguered showbiz managers being badgered into calling Disney to ask for spots for their clientele. A few of these work quite well; the rest are as inconsequential as in the last theatrical installment.

And that, for me, sums up the film. Light, inoffensive, and thoroughly inconsequential. There's no shame in a movie ticking those boxes, but it should really have gone straight to DVD.

Muppets Most Wanted certainly feels like it's been made with a lot of care, just not much love. The work that was done in 2012 to reinvent the franchise seems to have come to naught, as it slips firmly back onto the rails which saw it lose steam to begin with. This outing will keep the younger audience happy enough, but there's little there for anyone else.
Muppets: you're better than this.

Is the trailer representative of the film?

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
In all honesty, it probably does.

Pay at the cinema, Rent on DVD or just wait for it to be on the telly?
DVD, tops. You can safely wait until it's a fiver, as well.

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?
Not out of choice, but I probably wouldn't switch it off.

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?
I don't think so, but it wouldn't surprise me if one was buried in there.

And if I HAD to put a number on it…

And my question for YOU is…
Did anyone else leave with the feeling that maybe Celine Dion doesn't get the joke?

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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