Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Muppet Movie (1979)

MPAA Rating: G
Run Time: 95 minutes
Rating: 4/5

Description: After a chance encounter with an agent, Kermit the Frog sets out across America for Hollywood. Along the way he's pursued by Doc Hopper, who's determined to make him the spokesperson for his chain of frog legs restaurants, and runs into a variety of Muppet Show regulars. Wacky hijinks ensue.

Review: If it wasn't clear from the description, the plot of this movie is paper thin. As bad guys go, Doc Hopper doesn't really make sense. Yes, Kermit would make a great spokesperson for his chain, but when he can't convince or bully Kermit into working for him, he decides to kill him. No, it doesn't make any more sense in context.

There are various cameos by celebrities that most kids nowadays won't be able to identify. Plus, one running gag is rather dated.

On the other hand, kids will probably still like it and adults will, probably, at least get a warm nostalgic glow watching it again.

This was the first movie I ever saw in theaters. I still have the soundtrack, on 8-track*. I didn't recognize most of the cameos back then, I didn't get some of the jokes, and I think I even noticed the bad guy didn't make a lot of sense. I just didn't care. The Muppets are still fun to watch, there are plenty of jokes that still work, and the songs are still catchy. Even the special effects hold up reasonably well.

Not a masterpiece, by any means, but a still a good way to kill 90 minutes. And, "follow your dreams" is hardly a horrible message to send anyone.

*I do not have a working 8-track player, and the soundtrack doesn't seem to available for sale in any format, at least in the U.S., so I can't actually listen to it.

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