Directed by James Bobin. Starring Jason Segal, Amy Adams, Chris Cooper and The Muppets (oddly enough.)
In cinemas February 17
THE MUPPETS ARE BACK IN THIS SUBLIMELY JOYOUS, INSPIRATIONAL SENSATION
There’s no point trying to resist. The Muppets are back and they’re ready to tickle your funny bone, put springs in your step and knit a cosy, multi-coloured jumper to lovingly wrap around your heart. I’m sure someone could scrape the dark recesses of their soulless shell of an existence to find something negative about The Muppets (hi Fox News!), but they’re clearly spectacularly evil individuals that should be ex-communicated from humanity. Because, quite simply, The Muppets is magic. And I’m a believer.
As the film begins, the Muppets haven’t performed together in many years. But when their biggest fan Walter uncovers a plan to sell The Muppet Theatre to evil businessman Tex Richman (Chris Cooper), he, his brother Gary (Jason Segal) and Gary’s girlfriend (Amy Adams) seek to reunite the Muppets, and remind them of just how great they were together.
The plot couldn’t be more fitting. It’s been twelve years since Kermit and company graced our cinema screens, and many people have forgotten them – not just the idiosyncrasies of individual characters, but what they stood for, together. Luckily, writers Nicolas Stoller and Jason Segal didn’t. They know that Jim Henson’s ‘Rainbow Connection’-singing creations are pure, unadulterated, timeless joy. Though the wry pop-culture nods have been updated – the covers include Cee-Lo, the celebrity cameos feature SNL favourites – the prevailing tone remains what it always was: innocent, childhood laughter embodied, with absolutely no additives, preservatives, or cynicism.
Through the toe-tapping ‘Life’s a Happy Song’, Kermit’s tear-jerking trip down memory lane in ‘Pictures in My Head’ and of course the infectious ‘Mahna Mahna’, Brett Mackenzie’s (Flight of the Conchords) score evokes more fun, poignancy and nostalgia that seems humanly (or Muppetly) possible. Meanwhile, the Oscar-nominated song ‘Man or Muppet’ acts as a gorgeous tribute to Jim Henson: a man who never loved the Muppets as if they were real – he loved them because they are.
So go greet your old friends. They’re ready to welcome you back with loving arms.