Saturday, December 27, 2008


Holiday Movie Category: A Hand Puppet Humbug


Michael Candy Caine, Gonzho-ho-ho, Merry Kermit-mas, Fa-La-La-La-Lozzy Bear, Miss Piggy Pudding, Statler Claus & Deck the Waldorf, and a horrid Dickensian cesspool where poverty reigns, ghastly spirits kidnap at will, and frogs and pigs mate unabatedly.

More details here.


Dude, if I have to summarize the ubiquitous Dickens' A Christmas Carol to you, then you are totally clueless. But deep down, I envy you.


The Muppet Christmas Carol is my second dose of merry Muppet mayhem this X-mas Wrath and surprisingly, I'm not yet sick to death of fuzzy holiday cheer. Well, the Muppets have tackled Manhattan, space, Treasure Island, and zombies* so why not X-mas? Instant holiday classic pie filling, right Chuckles? No, not necessarily. The original Dickens story is largely a dark downer of a tale with only a brief glimpse of hope at the end as the payoff. Combining the depressing human drama of redemption and greed with the furry lovable Muppet critters doesn't always work. Maybe we'd have had something if the entire flick was played for yucks throughout and was all-Muppet. Although fine for the kiddies, the movie is just another Christmas Carol version in a sea of other much more effective interpretations which I find a little difficult to recommend for older folks. The Muppet Christmas Carol barely kept my interest with mushy songs and unfamiliar midcard Muppets (including the hateful Ratso Rizzo), but thankfully that annoying porkster Miss Piggy was kept out until the beginning of the third act. All I really have is regret that they haven't tackled the It's a Wonderful Life angle. Kermit is set to lose the Muppet theater due to going default on this bank loan. Then the angel Jim Henson who's yet to earn his wings has to help ol' Kermit from swinging from the rafters on X-mas Eve. We see a world without Kermit, without the Muppets, and without Henson's cash cow filling Disney's coffers. Hell, you can even bring in Sesame Street's Ernie and Bert to play the cab driver and the cop, Oscar the Grouch as Mr. Potter, and Big Bird as the voice of God! Box office gold. Henson Studios: call me!

*My back-up pitch.

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