The entire family was looking forward to the Muppet sequel. We loved The Muppets so much that we bought the blu-ray and have watched it repeatedly over the past couple of years. Songs from the soundtrack have been played in the home and in the car for family trips. Everything about the movie starring Jason Segel and Amy Adams was fantastic.
We decided to wait on watching Muppets Most Wanted. Neither myself or Sunshine are much for crowds, much less crowds full of screaming children. So we decided to wait until the long Easter weekend before venturing out to catch a matinee with the kids. Thankfully, there were very few people in the theatre so we were able to not worry about distractions.
Because I had heard that the movie hadn’t done very well in theatres, my expectations were lowered quite a bit going in. I sat back and did my best to make sure what I had heard and read didn’t affect my enjoyment of the flick.
The movie actually started with a Monsters University short, Party Central, which was pretty entertaining. I love the synergy between Pixar, the Muppets, and Disney. I think there are a myriad of options and possibilities for numerous forms of entertainment using those properties down the road.
Muppets Most Wanted was about how an agent, Dominic Badguy (played to perfection by Ricky Gervais) wanted to sign the Muppets immediately following the first film. The agent, however, was actually an evil mastermind who was working for the most dangerous frog in the world, Constantine. Apparently, the only way to tell Constantine apart from Kermit was a mole on Constantine’s face. Other than that, the two frogs were identical and Badguy was looking to kidnap Kermit after breaking Constantine out of jail so that the two could switch places and they could be master thieves on the run! Or something like that…
It’s the Muppets, folks…you need to suspend disbelief on a number of things.
There are a lot of inside jokes and humour that only parents may catch or understand. That’s okay, though, because the Muppets have always been like that. It’s actually one of the best things about their old television show and what has helped them endure over the years.
Along the way, we’re introduced to numerous entertaining characters including Tina Fey in a really fun role as Nadya the GULAG prison guard and the brilliant Ty Burrell as Jean Pierre Napoleon, a French Interpol officer who ends up working with Sam the Eagle (who now apparently works for the CIA). I not only really enjoyed their characters, but was impressed by the singing in their two “solo songs” in the movie.
In fact, other than the initial song about sequels (ugh), the majority of the music was catchy and entertaining…especially “I’m Number One”, “I’ll Get You What You Want”, “The Big House”, and the really unique “Interrogation Song” (I didn’t even realize they were singing at first…just a really well-done number). While not as good as the first movie, the songs were still entertaining enough for me to have downloaded the soundtrack once I got home.
Throw in some crazy-fun cameo appearances (a singing Danny Trejo? Really?) and a ton of references to their original series and you’ve got a pretty fun movie from beginning to end.
The problem, though, is living up to the expectations set by the last film. They even note in the opening number that sequels aren’t normally very good (not a great sign when you’re starting to watch a movie). But The Muppets was such a fantastic movie, there simply wasn’t any way that Muppets Most Wanted would ever live up to the hype.
And it’s a shame, too, because the movie…on its own…is quite good. It’s silly, it’s fun, and it’s entertaining. Is it great? No, but it’s still better than the majority of “adult comedies” that are out there right now.
If you haven’t seen it yet and are worried because of the poor box office, then you’re missing out on some fun. Just don’t expect it to be nearly as good as the first movie and you’ll be fine!