The Muppets

November 26, 2011

I declare this the most metafictional movie of all time.

(Also, weren’t the success of Chicago and Moulin-Rouge supposed to usher in a new wave of traditional movie musicals?  What happened to that?)

There’s a subtext to the whole film, a couple of them, really.  It’s a love letter to the original Muppet Show and Muppet Movie, but with that was a statement:  We may not get to do this again, and if this is a last hurrah, well, thanks guys, and we love you.  Made me cry on the drive home.


8 Responses to “The Muppets”

  1. sef Says:

    I don’t think I can be objective about this film: the parts I liked I probably liked due to nostalgia, and the parts I didn’t like I probably didn’t like because they weren’t nostalgic enough.

    But I was able to spot some problems. Mopey Kermit was a big one; the bigger one was the prominence of humans. (To take an example: the opening dance number was great. But the dance number at the end SHOULD have been all, or mostly all, muppets… but it wasn’t.)

    I have a strong urge to watch the original Muppet Movie again.

  2. One movie down this season. Now I have to see Hugo and Arthur Christmas. And next month, there’s Tintin and War Horse.

    As for this movie, I’ll admit I’ve never really considered myself a Muppets fan (although I did like Muppet Classic Theater and Muppet Treasure Island), but this one was pretty damn good, and brought a smile to my face. The fact that Jack Black, Rashida Jones, and John Krasinski appeared in it didn’t hurt, either.

  3. Jaws Says:

    It’s not just “we may not get to do this again” that hurts. It’s the one-step-removed subtext: “Nobody may get to write this kind of thing again for release into the wild” that bothers me. I’m thinking specifically of Barney v. The Famous/San Diego Chicken (Lyons Partnership v. Giannoulas, 179 F.3d 384 (5th Cir. 1999)) and the fallout thereafter. That litigation is probably more responsible for the lack of Muppet activity since 1999’s film than anything else (and yes, I have seen Avenue Q). And that makes me sad and frustrated.

  4. LupLun Says:

    Ah, don’t cry. ^_^ The movie is making money (no small feat while going up against Twilight), and is getting stellar reviews. A sequel is probably inevitable. And the muppets have actually adapted pretty well to the digital age: they’ve been gaining buzz for awhile on the strength of their Muppet Studios material on YouTube.

    I’ve got some other comments on the film, but I already put them on my blog, so I’ll just link them.

  5. Ty Says:

    (Also, weren’t the success of Chicago and Moulin-Rouge supposed to usher in a new wave of traditional movie musicals? What happened to that?)

    I vetoed the idea. Sorry. Musicals make me stabby.

  6. Besa Says:

    I couldn’t help hearing a giant corporation whisper in my ear, “See? We’re not destroying the Muppets. We’re SAVING them.” I feel like Disney is trying to cast itself as Walter (interesting choice of name, don’t you think?) when really, it’s got more in common with Mr. Tex Richman.

    Then again, if Disney can’t restore interest in an almost-defunct cultural icon by writing it into epic-but-shallow tales of romance and adventure, who can?

  7. […] how I said The Muppets was the most metafictional movie of all time?  I think this one beats […]

  8. Andrew Says:

    We rented this on Friday for family movie night and decided to keep it for another showing. While I never considered myself a true Muppet fan, this movie made me smile. It’s pure meta-fiction, but wasn’t the original show something like that anyway, with all the backstage shenanigans?? Didn’t it always cast itself as the in the straight man role, personified by Kermit, opposite the cultural waves buffeting the viewers? The Muppets are that rare combination of pure and innocent that is aware of it’s purity and innocence and remains so despite that awareness. That’s a good thing.

    Plus, it’s got my kids singing “We Built This City on Rock and Roll” with great enthusiasm.

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