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The Muppets

4.0 11
Director: James Bobin

Cast: Jason Segel, Amy Adams, Chris Cooper


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When an evil oil man discovers black gold beneath Muppet Theater, Kermit recruits a Muppet super-fan and his two best friends to help gather up the gang for a telethon that will save the venue from being razed and replaced with a giant oil pump. Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) never met an oil field he couldn't suck dry. So when Tex discovers


When an evil oil man discovers black gold beneath Muppet Theater, Kermit recruits a Muppet super-fan and his two best friends to help gather up the gang for a telethon that will save the venue from being razed and replaced with a giant oil pump. Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) never met an oil field he couldn't suck dry. So when Tex discovers a bountiful reservoir right underneath Muppet Theater, he begins drawing up plans to claim the land and start drilling. Little does Tex realize that devoted Muppets fan Walter is currently in Los Angeles with his best friends Gary (Jason Segel) and Mary (Amy Adams), and that he's not about to let one man's greed spoil a good thing for everyone. With Kermit by their side, Walter, Gary, and Mary hatch a plan to put on a big telethon that will help them raise the ten million dollars needed to keep Muppet Theater standing. But rounding up the gang won't be easy, because these days Miss Piggy's got a posh job at Vogue Paris; Fozzie has landed a gig at a Reno casino; Gonzo has become the owner of a successful plumbing company; and Animal is dealing with anger management issues in a Santa Barbara clinic. With the drilling deadline fast drawing near and Tex wringing his hands in anticipation, the gang races to put on the performance of a lifetime and save Muppet Theater from certain destruction. Directed by James Bobin and written by Segel and Nicholas Stoller, The Muppets Movie features cameos by Zach Galifianakis, Billy Crystal, Jack Black, Alan Arkin, and Jean-Claude Van Damme, among others.

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Though the legacy of Muppet mastermind Jim Henson still reverberates in the hearts and minds of children far and wide (most notably through Sesame Street), when it came to the movies, Kermit and the gang had never quite managed to recapture the magic of years gone by. In hindsight, one wonders if they were held back by a barely perceptible aura of cynicism: Maybe the people behind the films believed the Muppets were past their prime, and maybe that theory wasn't completely off base. Whatever the reason, it seemed that in recent years the spark that made The Muppet Show a phenomenon had dulled considerably. Thankfully, over 30 years after they first hit the scene, and more than 20 years after Henson's death, the Muppets get their groove back. Screenwriters Nick Stoller and Jason Segel (who also stars) allowed no cynicism to taint The Muppets, which was directed by James Bobin of Flight of the Conchords fame. In fact, part of what makes The Muppets so successful is the honesty of its premise. In the film, as in life, The Muppet Show is valued primarily for its nostalgia factor, having long since been replaced by tackier fare. However, for Walter (voiced by Peter Linz) -- a puppet who resides in Smalltown, USA, with his brother and best friend Gary (Segel) -- the Muppets represent the sense of belonging he's never been able to experience as the only puppet in a town full of humans. When Gary and his girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams) take Walter with them on a vacation to Los Angeles, a tour of the Muppet Theater reveals that the onetime stomping ground of his idols is but a lonely shadow of its former glory. As fate would have it, Walter learns an oil tycoon (Chris Cooper) plans to tear down the theater, and suddenly reenergized, he makes it his mission to find Kermit, reunite the old crew, and hold a telethon that will raise enough money to save the theater from destruction. It's a tall order, but the Muppets (and the film) have the heart for the job. There are flaws here and there -- Kermit occasionally seems like an impersonation of himself (perhaps it's impossible to recapture the bit of Henson's personality that he brought to Kermit as his original voice and puppeteer), and Cooper's musical sequence doesn't quite fit. It's also true that the formula doesn't deviate much from those of the classic Muppet films. Luckily, The Muppets doesn't suffer for these elements. It's a winning formula, after all, and the sincerity from all those involved gives it the feeling of an affectionate homage, as opposed to a crutch to lean on. Segel and Adams demonstrate a joyful earnestness in several musical numbers (for what's a Muppet movie without song and dance?) that could have easily fallen flat, while Cooper's gleefully villainous portrayal of oil tycoon Tex Richman echoes that of Charles Durning's turn as frog-legs merchant Doc Hopper in The Muppet Movie (1979). The many celebrity cameos (including a brilliant blink-and-you-miss it appearance from Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters) are top-notch, and Jack Black playing himself as the telethon's reluctant celebrity host -- well, he's just really, really funny. In the end, however, the film's success is owed to the fact that the living, breathing actors understand the show belongs to the Muppets. In their capable paws, claws, and flippers, the fun, kindness, and total, unadulterated wackiness of The Muppet Show is finally back.

Product Details

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Original Release:
Walt Disney Video
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Special Features

Disc 1 - Blu-ray Feature Film + Bonus; ; Scratching The Surface: A Hasty Examination of The Making Of The Muppets - A Surprisingly shallow but profoundly absurd look at Muppets and humans working together to make cinematic history; ; Deleted Scenes; A Little Screen Test On the Way To The Read-Through - The Muppets bring the wocka wocka wocka to a routine camera test; ; Explaining Evil: The Full Tex Richman Song; ; Unreleased Theatrical Spoof Trailers ; Audio Commentary - With Jason Segel, James Bobin and Nicholas Stoller; ; Disney Intermission - Pause the movie and see what happens!; ; Plus DVD Bonus Feature; ; Disc 2 - DVD Feature Film + Bonus; ; The Longest Blooper Reel Ever Made (In Muppet History**)** We Think - Includes Muppets! Stars! And one ridiculously long chicken joke!

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jason Segel Gary
Amy Adams Mary
Chris Cooper Tex Richman
Rashida Jones CDE Executive
Steve Whitmire Kermit,Beaker,Statler,Rizzo
Eric Jacobson Miss Piggy,Fozzie Bear,Animal,Sam Eagle,Marvin Suggs
Dave Goelz Gonzo,Dr. Bunsen Honeydew,Zoot,Beauregard,Waldorf,Kermit Moopet
Bill Barretta Swedish Chef,Rowlf,Dr. Teeth,Pepe the Prawn,Bobo,Fozzie Moopet
Peter Linz Walter
Alan Arkin Tour Guide
Bill Cobbs Grandfather
Zach Galifianakis Hobo Joe
Ken Jeong "Punch Teacher" Host
Jim Parsons Human Walter
Eddie Pepitone Postman
Kristen Schaal Moderator
Sarah Silverman Greeter
Eddie "Piolin" Sotelo TV Executive
Raymond Ma Elderly Asian Man
Tuan Shu Lan Elderly Aisan Woman
Donald Glover Junior CDE Executive
Dahlia Waingort TV Executive
Jonathan Palmer Reporter One
Don Yanan Reporter Two
Michael Albala TV Executive
Julia Marie Franzese "Punch Teacher" Kid
Gunnar Smith Gary Age 6
Connor Gallagher Gary Age 9
Justin Marco Gary Age 13
Cameron Kasal Laughing Kid
Justin Tinucci Laughing Kid
Alex Long Laughing Kid
Aria Noelle Curzon Waitress
David Rudman Scooter,Janice,Miss Poogy
Matt Vogel Sgt. Floyd Pepper,Camilla,Sweetums,'80s Robot,Lew Zealand,Uncle Deadly,Rowlf Moopet,Crazy Harry

Technical Credits
James Bobin Director
Rahel Afiley Costumes/Costume Designer
Aris Archontis Songwriter
Martin G. Baker Executive Producer
Bill Barretta Associate Producer
Christophe Beck Score Composer
Beau Borders Sound Mixer
Don Burgess Cinematographer
Andrew Cahn Art Director
Steve Cantamessa Sound Mixer
Chen Neeman Songwriter
Mitchell Dubin Camera Operator
Legacy Effects Special Effects
Gail Goldberg Casting
David Hoberman Producer
Jason Segel Executive Producer,Screenwriter
Josh King Asst. Director
Todd Lieberman Producer
Bret Mardock Makeup
Bret McKenzie Songwriter,Musical Direction/Supervision
Matthew Moriarty Camera Operator
Kevin O'Connell Sound Mixer
Michael Rooney Choreography
Marcia Ross Casting
Steve Saklad Production Designer
J. Alan Scott Special Effects Supervisor
John G. Scotti Executive Producer
Nicholas Stoller Executive Producer,Screenwriter
Patrick Sullivan Set Decoration/Design
James Thomas Editor
Gigi Williams Makeup

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Muppets
1. Walter's Beginnings [4:11]
2. A Trip To Los Angeles [6:44]
3. An Important Plot Point [5:27]
4. The Third Greatest Gift Ever [8:03]
5. Getting The Gang Back Together [9:19]
6. We Need You [6:08]
7. The Telethon Pitch [2:19]
8. The Old Place [6:32]
9. Rehearsal [6:32]
10. The Moopets Are Back [3:44]
11. Alone...Solo...Unaccompanied [3:33]
12. "Man Or Muppet" [3:13]
13. It's Showtime! [2:15]
14. Special Guests [2:41]
15. Powerless [3:31]
16. Approaching The Goal [5:22]
17. Walter's Talent [4:55]
18. We're a Family [3:30]
19. A Finale [4:03]
20. End Credits [4:15]
21. Chapter 21 [6:11]


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The Muppets 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
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jlmccauley More than 1 year ago
This is a great movie, saw it in theaters and bought it. Takes you back to the old characters and some new ones that make the story entertaining. My 3 year old niece sat through the whole thing and loved it!
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