Part of my life in London revolves around attempts to do “cool” things that this capital city has to offer. So when I saw recently that the BFI (British Film Institute), in partnership with the London Comedy Film Festival (LOCO), was premiering The Muppets two weeks before the official UK release (more than two months after the US – a rant I shall have on a future post), I jumped at the opportunity to get tickets. Then to my horror, they were sold out for the one-time showing. Good thing I found out that the BFI releases standby tickets, and good thing I harassed the front desk staff (something I learned from my own work experience, that yes, it pays off to ask because extra tickets are often released). I was able to snatch up two of four tickets left for my friend and I. There were no commercials, just the adorably fantastic Toy Story short, the film, and a Q&A with the director, James Bobin (also a director/writer for Flight of the Conchords and Da Ali G Show). No big deal. I must say, I haven’t consistently laughed that much in a long time. And when I wasn’t laughing, I had a huge grin on my face. Yes, the movie is ridiculously silly and preposterous – which makes it so wonderful! All of the tongue and cheek humor and random cameos (Feist?!?! love it.) were a delight. What made the experience even more entertaining was the fact that we were clearly in a theater full of (hardcore) fans – everyone got the inside jokes, everyone embraced the campyness. Everyone went with it and enjoyed the ride. I loved the new addition, Walter. I loved that all kids in Smalltown, USA enthusiastically love school. I loved the maniacal laughs. I loved Jason Segel’s over-the-top enthusiasm. I loved the songs written by Bret Mckenzie. I loved that Jim Parsons was Walter’s human alter-ego. I loved that Gonzo owned a recycled toilet company. I loved that everyone traveled by map. I loved Kermit and the crew singing The Rainbow Connection. And I really just loved seeing all the muppets back together again. Long live The Muppets!
Here’s the Oscar-nominated “Man or Muppet”