It seems only natural that, after the brilliant 2011-movie The Muppets (which might even be considered the funniest Muppet-movie yet!), a sequel would soon follow. And so, three years later the Muppets return. The movie picks up right after the previous one, yet this movie is a different kind of Muppet-movie.
After they saved their beloved theater in the previous movie, the Muppets are ready to hit the road again and tour the world. But then all of a sudden, disaster strikes! Kermit the Frog is thrown in jail when he’s mistaken for the evil Russian frog Constantine, who wants to become the greatest thief of all time.
Constantine looks exactly like Kermit, except for a mole on his right upper jaw. He uses the Muppets’ tour in various European cities as cover, so he can secretly pull off the crime of the century. None of the other Muppets, except the ever-awesome Animal, realize their boss is an impostor.
So that’s the story. It’s not bad as it goes, but the one thing about the new Muppet-movie that doesn’t really work is the evil frog. Constantine may look like Kermit, but he shares none of his grace on the silver screen. The new green frog is annoying, unfunny and completely out-of-touch with the rest of the movie.
I suppose in a way, the evil Constantine is not meant to be funny. He’s not a comedian, he’s a bad guy. But more so than being bad or cool, he’s a nuisance.
Perhaps it’s the fact that he looks like Kermit without anyone really noticing – maybe it was better to give the evil frog different looks or invent a more original bad guy – but whatever the case: Constantine is the main reason why Muppets most wanted is a bit dull sometimes.
It’s an obvious fact, when you realize the best scenes of the movie are those without the evil frog!
Adding a little humor to the mix is Ricky Gervais as the booking agent who helps the Muppets expand their tour around the world.
Though this man is more often than not a joy to watch, he unfortunately enough follows the same pattern as the mole-wearing, evil green frog Constantine. The man is simply not very funny. Sorry, Ricky … just being honest here!
Luckily, we get to see our dearest friends again! Miss Piggy, the Great Gonzo, Fozzy Bear, that orange-haired guy wearing the white lab coat who constantly freaks out when he’s being used for another crazy experiment … what’s his name? … oh yea, Beaker!
Even the main guy from the last movie, the whistling wonder Walter only plays a minor role … why? We loved that guy!
The only human actor who really shines in this movie is Tina Fey as the female prison guard in Siberia. She’s not just beautiful in appearance, but brings a different flavor to the movie.
Perhaps it’s time the Muppets went back to the basics, because sometimes messing with the old formula does not pay off … it clearly didn’t for this mediocre movie.
Did you know?
Danny Trejo‘s mother unfortunately passed away as he was filming his last scenes in the movie. As he was finishing his scenes so he could fly back to Los Angeles for the funeral, the cast and crew offered their condolences and sympathies to him. Danny Trejo, known for his tough guy roles and demeanor, shrugged off the sympathies. When Steve Whitmire offered his condolences in character as Kermit the Frog, Danny Trejo broke down crying.
Give it to me short:
Muppets most wanted is not as funny as the 2011-movie, mainly due to the evil frog Constantine. The way this Russian prisoner puppet introduces himself into the story feels unnatural, and – I never thought I’d say this of someone who’s clearly *not* human – the performance of Constantine seems a little weak. Even the British comedian Ricky Gervais cannot change the outcome with his role as a shady booking agent.
It’s especially ironic that this sequel should appear so dull at times, since the first song in this movie is the Muppets singing: ‘We’re doing a sequel, that’s what we do in Hollywood, and everybody knows that the sequel’s never quite as good‘.
Tina Fey is the only human in the movie who appears fresh in her role, and gladly brings a little spark and color to the rest of the grey cast.
Speaking of color, what would a Muppets-movie be without all of your favorite characters? They all return and play a part in the storyline, but near the end you’ll realize that the movie focuses just a little too much on Constantine … and not clearly enough on Animal, Fozzy Bear, the Great Gonzo, Beauregard and many more!
Better luck next time, Muppets!