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This is not the sequel you have been looking for…

Muppets Most Wanted movie review

Movie Rating:

I may have mentioned previously that getting to the latest filums is proving a tad tricky – what with life getting in the way n that – but I get there in the end.

Usually.

But these delays cause other problems – not least when the rest of the world has already had its say on a film.

And EVERYONE has had their say on The Muppets.

You see, the problem with the Muppets is that people love them – and when you produce a film as good as the last one, expectations are high for the sequel. Almost unreasonably.

But they knew that.

Hence the opening song.

And in that opening four minutes you get all that is great – and bad – about Muppets Most Wanted.

Hell, they make the joke themselves about how the sequel is never as good as the previous film. They also point out that this isn’t their first sequel.

And it’s this self-knowing referential style that is the cause of some the problems with Muppets Most Wanted.

Granted I may be over-thinking this, but a film about theft (the gang go on a world tour so the top two criminals in the world can try and pinch the crown jewels) that steals from a myriad of other films is almost trying to be too clever.

Pretty much every prison break-out is ripped off, there’s a gag about the number of famous cameos using Robin, the Marx Brothers’ mirror scene makes an appearance… And the whole thing is put together like a long episode of the TV show that gave Kermit and the gang their big break.

Actually, on the subject of cameos, I think this is where the film may have suffered a bit in America – the majority of ‘blink and you’ll miss ’em’ performances seemed to be the great and good of British film and TV.

Much as I love him, I’m pretty sure no one in America has heard of Russell Tovey.

And then there’s the songs. There are so many shoehorned in that it actually derails the plot. And man are they shoehorned.

That’s not to say the songs aren’t good, they are – but it feels like the action stops every five minutes just to get another musical number in.

Although if I find out which writer came up with the Celine Dion number I will be using Harry’s explosive skills to get revenge.

I can understand the flack this film has come under – it doesn’t have the heart, love and sheer unbridled joy of the first one…

…but that doesn’t make it a bad film.

I still laughed. A lot. All the main Muppets put in good performances. And the main human co-stars (Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey and Ty Burrell) shine.

Yes, the jokes are a bit lame (take a bow, Usher) and laboured at times – but that’s kind of the point.

And no, it’s not The Muppets (the last film, not the cast) – but it was never going to be once Jason Segel moved on to other projects.

But Gonzo’s still Gonzo, there are two Kermits, Fozzy still isn’t funny and Beauregard gets smacked in the face by a pigeon. That’s pretty much all boxes ticked.

Most Wanted won’t live long in the memory for many who saw it, but there is so much going on, so many little bits packed in to each and every scene, it will benefit from a second viewing.

If only to give you the chance to see what’s on Dominic’s business card…

Movie Rating:

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A fresh approach to film reviews - no spoilers, just honest and heartfelt opinions.