Swanner: Jason Segel and Amy Adams star in the new film The Muppets in hopes that this reboot will bring these fuzzy puppets to the forefront. The storyline follow Gary and Walter, two brothers, one human (Segel) and the other his Muppety sibling. Walter and Gary have been fans of the Muppets for years, so when Gary takes his girlfriend Mary to Los Angeles they take Walter along and, of course, must visit the Muppet Studios. While on the tour of the studio Walter overhears Tex Richman say that he plans to level the studio and drill for oil. The only way to stop him is get the Muppets back together and have a fundraiser to save the studio.
Judd: I am a HUGE Muppets fan, and The Muppets takes the franchise back to it’s origins with the first film, The Muppet Movie. If that’s a good thing or a bad thing depends on who you ask. I enjoyed the film, but I think the weird and corny humor escaped the majority of our audience. They want their meta-humor to reference pop culture and Disney classics. They want Shrek. The Muppets shtick refers back to vaudeville and being humorously unfunny. I’m worried that modern audiences won’t get it.
Swanner: I’m worried about it too. I’m thinking that the 13 to 35 crowd isn’t going to get it and the studio will see it as a failure. I know that when the first musical number started i was afraid. Even though it was a very funny musical number i know how cruel kids can be. For me as a Muppet fan, i really enjoyed the movie. If you remember in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Jason Segel’s character was big into puppets. So when i read Segel and FSM director Nicholas Stoller wrote the screenplay things came clearer. Once you add in Flight of the Conchord’s James Bobin as Director and Bret McKenzie as songwriter you have one very hip movie.
Judd: Or in the case of The Muppets one pointedly unhip movie. While I liked the humor, where I think some will not, I will say the film does move a bit slow in parts; or rather, it feels very deliberately paced. So taking cornball humor with a slower-than-average pacing and I really think the movie is going to lose it for most people. And it’s funny, because during the movie Kermit and the gang are under constant assault for being old fashioned and out of touch.
Swanner: Maybe we’re approaching this film the wrong way. Maybe we shouldn’t worry about weather or not the youth of today will enjoy this or any movie. I really enjoyed The Muppets. I actually thought the songs were fun and the musical numbers were handled to be funny but still keeping their integrity. I think Segel and company did the best they could do at keeping the Muppets true and not trying to change it up to fit today’s video gamer mentality. Will it be a hit? I don’t know, but i liked it a lot and I’m glad the Muppets are back.
Judd: The Muppets is one of those movies where, as a critic, you have to have faith in your feeling toward a movie even if it may not jibe with popular opinion. Art House Hipster Douchebags do it all the time with movies like Tree of Life and Mary Magdalene Minneapolis Moline. They wear it as a badge of honor and use it to judge other people. So with that… I loved The Muppets. And if you don’t it’s because you didn’t get it and you’re obviously stupid.