Muppets Most Wanted Blu-ray Review
The world is a
better place because of The Muppets.
These characters are ones that bring smiles, joy, and wonderment to the
these imaginative, fun, and energetic characters. For a while it seemed
the series and the wonderful characters that make it so awesome were
going to disappear
off the charts as it had been so many years since anything had been
the series. Then 2011's The Muppets
happened, with actor/writer Jason Segel convincing Disney to kick-start
wave of Muppeteering with a new film.
These beloved characters were never meant to be left forgotten and this
something Segel knew all too well. Alongside collaborator James Bobin
director of HBO's fantastic musical comedy series Flight
of the Conchords), The Muppets were born... again!
Due to the huge
success of The Muppets (2011), Disney
hired director Bobin to once again help bring the characters to life
another new adventure. Alongside Segel's frequent collaborator Nicholas
(director of Forgetting Sarah Marshall
and The Five Year Engagement), the
team brought together most of the same collaborators who worked to make
previous film entry. However, Segel was not to return for the sequel
stated that he felt his work as accomplished with the 2011 film, and
reportedly due to scheduling conflicts). Writing Muppets
Most Wanted together, Bobin and Stoller crafted a comedic
and heartfelt tale that is a caper throwback to 60's films and previous
entries like The Great Muppet Caper
(1981) and other genre pics from the time-period.
Most Wanted takes place directly
after the ending to The Muppets
(2011). Following the successful program that raised enough funds to
from losing it all, the characters are left wondering what it is they
next. A magnificent musical number begins (in which the characters draw
to many classic films and joke about the difficulties found in making a
film sequel), and the film is on it's way. It isn't long before Kermit
rest are approached by Dominic Badguy (Ricky Gervais), who suggests to
that a world tour would be the best way for the Muppets to continue on
following their successful program. Persuaded by the rest of the group,
agrees and a large world tour begins to take place. Before long, Kermit
to worry about finances and if they can afford to have the tour.
"somehow" comes up with enough funds for them to perform right next
to many museum's hosting jewels and rare items. Dominic, as it turns
up to his last name 'badguy' by helping the world's "greatest"
criminal Constantine (a frog who appears almost exactly the same as
Frog - save for one cheek mole) and a plot is schemed where Constantine
places with Kermit. Kermit ends up being found and confused for the
Constantine and ends up in a Russian Gulag 38B cell. Will The Muppets
to figure it out before it's too late to save Kermit and stop Dominic
and Constantine from their jewel quests too?
Kermit becomes a
sensation inside of the Gulag and is adored and admired by the high
prison guard Nadya (Tina Fey), who discovers that he is Kermit the Frog
a huge crush, wanting Kermit to help them practice music and dance
the Gulag for an upcoming song and dance show. Meanwhile, Constantine
bad Kermit impression and tries to steal the jewels while performing
others Muppets for 'The Muppet Show'
(which is currently putting audiences to sleep in spades with a four
running time and long slow-jazz music numbers). A brilliant (if
kooky) inspector named Jean Pierre Napoleon (performed by Ty Burrell of
Modern Family) works with Interpol to
try and find Constantine and becomes entwined in figuring out the
behind the rare jewels and items disappearing from the successful
Napoleon on the quest is Sam Eagle, and together they form a dynamic
And, of course,
along the journey there are many wonderful moments with the beloved
characters like Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo, Beaker, Animal, Dr.
Honeydew, The Swedish Chef, and countless other characters from the
world of The Muppets. These
delightful puppet characters are at the heart of everything that makes
films and stories meaningful and important to so many lives. Part of
the joy of
partaking in any Muppet film becomes about these characters and the
of spending more time with them. Even though not all of the Muppet
been equally great throughout the years, the film's manage to all be
entertaining and worth seeing because the main attraction has always
spending time with Muppets.
Muppet's Most Wanted
does a terrific job of introducing the new
human characters into the storyline. Ricky Gervais surprises with his
family-friend performance (where it's clear he's having the time of his
Ty Burrell continues to impress with the same quality of smart comedic
he's perfected through Modern Family,
and Tina Fey remains amongst the funniest and smartest comedians in the
business and impresses with her Kermit-obsessed character (and thus
one of the best comedic performances in her career yet).
in Muppets Most Wanted are fantastic.
The film has so many core sequences that take place around the world
strong blue screen effects work. It astonishingly comes together as one
zippy-fast energetic film utilizing 425 effects that seamlessly blend
overall production. The sets, costumes, cinematography (that
realized color-scheme is a showstopper from Don Burgess) and other
production elements are well utilized here and are sing-worthy (praiseworthy)!
The film is also
highlighted beautifully with music that notches up the toe-tapping
energetic fun tenfold with some of the best songs ever crafted in
Songwriter (and sometimes Muppet performer) Bret McKenzie (of Flight of the Conchords fame) is the lyricist
making so many creative and fun lines with each song.
The six new pieces
done for Muppets Most Wanted are
terrific (matching the quality of songs featured in the 2011 Muppets film), with some of the standout
numbers being the brilliant opening Muppets..
Again! and "I'll Get You What
You Want" both making a big impression. McKenzie makes the songs so
much fun and memorable that it's clear how much the musical aspect of
makes the experience all the more special. The music is one of the best
most essential parts of the film.
Bobin knows exactly how to complement these songs. Having worked with
talented McKenzie before on Flight of the
Conchords, the pair's reunion on these films is a real treat and
these artists great understanding of each other's artistic
is visually remarkable and comes up with some splendid camera shots and
the best out of the great set-pieces, costumes, and artistic style.
seems to work so well and excel through this pitch-perfect direction.
Bobin is also a genuinely great director when orchestrating comedy. One
most important key ingredients to any Muppets film is a wonderful
comedy that can bring smiles and laughter to the whole family. Bobin
accomplish this in spades while also retaining a distinctive and
comedy styling that makes the comedy have a distinctive quality that
heart and soul in spades.
The heart and soul
of the film is about the way the characters manage to bring a sense of
togetherness and unity to the Muppets and how this unity brings joy to
those around. Throughout the film, Kermit manages to be a core reminder
why The Muppets are generously
wonderful creations for the world: the optimism, the kindness, the
everything combines to form a strong impression that both children and
can feel completely enamored by. Muppets Most Wanted is an easy contender
as one of the best productions of the entire year. This is a film that
of magic and it sits alongside The
Muppets magnificently and is not to be missed.
Muppets Most Wanted
is presented on Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG-4
AVC encoded 1.85:1 aspect ratio high definition (HD) presentation. The transfer is one of the best looking ones
released this year with great color that seems to 'pop' off the screen.
almost like the fun phrasing of seeing
the rainbow has been achieved in Muppet-verse with fun colors
the screen in a beautiful way. A lot of this colorful magic is because
excellent cinematography from Don Burgess. Definition
and clarity are strong throughout
and a fine modern production aesthetic helps to make everything look
from beginning to end.
The audio presentation delivered for Muppets
is 5.1 DTS-HD High Resolution Audio. While it's perhaps a notch below The
Muppets (which had a full DTS-HD MA sound presentation) this is
excellent sounding presentation overall, which utilizes a high (if
bit-rate instead of a variable one. This technically qualifies as a
lossless) audio mix presentation, but most listeners will have a blast
generally quite proficient and pleasing soundstage. The
music songs by Bret McKenzie and the score
by Christophe Beck blend well together throughout the film and are
realized. Listener's will still have a Muppet-good time.
The supplements included on this release might not
large as on some releases, but each is interesting and worthwhile. The
'extra' is the inclusion of an all new cut of the film (which Disney
promoted as 'the unnecessarily extended edition'). This
runs about 13 minutes longer than
the theatrical version (also included) and reminds one of a director's
cut experience. For those who don't know, James Bobin originally
longer version for the 2011 Muppets film but Disney wanted a
run-rime so some edits had to be made. This edition's extended edition
exist because of this and should be a thrill for any huge Muppet fan.
As a mini-comedic bit, the Blu-ray release also
'Statler and Waldorf Cut' (which, without spoiling anything for
first-time viewers, most can guess what this would be based on these
Rounding out the disc is: The Longer Longest
in the Muppets History, a lengthy reel showcasing a lot of outtakes
(particularly extensive shots that didn't work because of big laughing
outbursts from a gleeful Ricky Gervais), Rizzo's Biggest Fan, a
piece that showcases the beloved character (around since The Muppet
but who is hardly seen in Muppets Most Wanted) writing a letter
director as Rizzo's "biggest fan" around.
Lastly, the "I'll Get You What You Want" Music
Video performed by Bret McKenzie is included. This comedic video
footage from the film's scene using this song with enthusiastic
singing and performance from musician McKenzie in the style perfected
of the Conchords.
Muppets Most Wanted is (as it turns out)
one of the
best films in the entire Muppet canon. Managing to avoid the pitfalls
sequels encounter, the effort amazes with great comedy, characters,
and fun for the whole family to enjoy.
This is a treasure continuing to bring to light
the joy of the
Muppets. For fans of the first film,
this is a magnificent must-see experience. Filled to the brim with an
amount of great cameo appearances and featuring fun direction and
Most Wanted is a must-see family film and one of the best releases
year (... for the lovers, the dreamers, and me).
filmmaking magic at its best and that is something that shouldn't be
Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema, and a student who aspires to make movies. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.