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|Originaltitel:||Muppets Most Wanted|
|Laufzeit:||Approx. 108 min.|
|FSK:||From 0 years|
Now all the puppets are dancing, lighting up the stage: After the curtain has risen very successfully for the "Muppets" with their comeback film 2011, the fun puppet troupe can once again go on another cinema adventure under the direction of James Bobin. This time they want to extend their newly found popularity to Europe. The clever agent Dominic Fieslinger (Ricky Gervais) wants to help them. He's organized them gigs in some of the biggest cities in Europe. Although Kermit is a little sceptical, he is persuaded to go on a Muppet tour abroad. Not a good decision, because the trip is only part of a sophisticated plan of the nasty jewel thief Constantines, who unceremoniously exchanges his identity with that of Kermit. And so the popular frog is captured in Berlin as Constantin and transported to a Russian prison while the crook takes his place. But Kermit is convinced: Miss Piggy and his best friends Fozzie Bear, Gonzo and Co. will notice that the wrong frog is leading them through the show and that they will free him from the clutches of the crazy prison guard Nadya (Tina Fey). If he's not mistaken…
While the 2011 "Muppet" film was primarily a love letter to the classic "Muppet Show" and thus clearly oriented itself to this popular format in terms of style and humour, "Muppets Most Wanted" takes a slightly different path. His pacing and humor reminds us more of the first "Muppet" movies, even though their quality isn't quite reached here. The gag density is a bit higher than in the last movie, but some of its subversive humor and charm is lost. "Muppets Most Wanted" serves its gags much more obviously, which also has the consequence that some of the laughs are a bit flatter. But fortunately, there are far more humorous hits than tube bursts.
The story is very turbulent and is filled with prominent guest stars who are sometimes only seen for a few seconds. From Lady Gaga to Salma Hayek, James McAvoy, Usher, Christoph Walz or even Til Schweiger, the celebrities are almost every minute and the door handles are in each other's hands. For the most part this is very funny, but at times it also seems a bit overloaded. It's fun to discover all the mini-cameos, but at the end you wonder if it wouldn't have been better if the makers had concentrated a little bit more on the script than on the numerous guest stars.
The human co-stars of the Muppets in this film are the British comedian and "The Office" inventor Ricky Gervais, "30 Rock" star Tina Fey and Ty Burrell, well-known from the comedy series "Modern Family". While the latter, as a French Interpol agent, looks a bit like a weak copy of Steve Martin's Inspector Clouseau, Gervais and Fey are also played completely against the wall by the Muppets. The somewhat exaggerated play of the three human main actors doesn't really have a positive effect on the overall impression of the movie. But as soon as the animal shows up again, Fozzie tells bad jokes or Gonzo with his new number wants to make the audience enthusiastic, such weaknesses are quickly forgotten again.
Because in the moments when the Muppets are the center of attention, "Muppets Most Wanted" is a wonderful gag firework, which once again reveals why the lovable creations of Jim Henson (1936-1990) in their various incarnations have enjoyed unbroken popularity for well over four decades. And even though their latest feature film is not the best that the Muppets have seen so far, the many positive aspects are enough to attest their turbulent European tour a clear "worth seeing" despite minor weaknesses. And if you get to the cinema in time, you'll also get to see an extremely amusing short film from the "Monster University"!
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