Sunday, March 30, 2014

[Review] Muppets Most Wanted

 "Looks like the studio ordered a sequel," Statler says as he looks into the camera at the audience, right before the crew of Muppets break into the opening song. "The second one is never quite as good!" they sing. And while that's true here, it's still one of the many comical lines in the pleasantly entertaining Muppets Most Wanted, where the self-reflexive humor is turned up to the max.

The plot begins with Constantine, a bizzaro Russian Kermit, as he escapes from prison. He's the #1 villain in the world, but he's a funny one. Meanwhile, The Muppets are prepping their world tour, and Dominic (Ricky Gervais) signs on as their mischievous agent. In a case of mistaken identity, Kermit and Constantine get switched--Kermit gets sent to a Siberian prison that's lead by a hard-nosed guard named Nadya (Tina Fey), while Constantine joins the Muppet crew. It's a mess.

Muppets Most Wanted piles on the laughs through its dialogue and gags. The prison scenes in particular, are a riot, showing some hilarious images: Kermit getting wheeled in wearing Hannibal Lecter attire, Danny Trejo and Ray Liotta singing a Boyz II Men song, the sequence of Kermit's botched escape attempts.

Even though it's a step down from the 2011 predecessor, Muppets Most Wanted is thoroughly enjoyable and it never really falters. The constant cleverness, jubilant musical numbers, and love for its characters make it a sequel worth seeing.

Cameos on cameos on cameos.


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