Not Enough Muppets, And Too Many Songs
JLFM - wrote on 04/12/12
The Muppet Christmas Carol is not nearly as good as I was expecting and hoping, but it's still a lot of fun.
One thing I should clarify, is that if you came to see the muppets, you will probably be disappointed. This film is all about Scrooge, who is played by a very human Michael Caine. This is truly, the biggest flaw in The Muppet Christmas Carol, because with the muppets getting so little screen time then they deserve, this adaption of the Dicken's story doesn't have much to separate itself from other adaptions.
Gonzo narrates, and Rizzo the Rat is there to make jokes. This potentially amusing duo isn't very funny, and is only there to move the story along. In fact, they feel a lot like filler.
And speaking of filler, did I mention all the songs in this movie? I believe there were 6 or 7 songs total. Though the one at the beginning is somewhat entertaining, and a genius number by the Marley brothers is highly enjoyable, most of the songs are tedious and dull. They exist only to extend the running time.
You will be seeing a lot of Michael Caine, which should be obvious because he plays that star, Ebeneezer Scrooge. I expected to see more muppets than humans, but this proved incorrect. Michael Caine performs adequately as Scrooge, but in the end, his performance is a little underwhelming. Also, during the musical numbers, it always seems like he has nothing to do.
When the muppets get into the act, the film is more enjoyable, but this certainly isn't first class muppet material. It feels like B-movie muppet material, and that was certainly a disappointment.
The movie adapts the classic faithfully, and there are lots of fun scenes. And even among a lot of dull songs, there are a couple gems. I just expected so much more from the ever-dependable muppets, and I can't help but feel a little let down.
Above average Christmas tale, under average muppet film.