Beloved Franchise, Mediocre Movies


In late November of 2011, Disney ended up reviving one of their most beloved franchises in movie form, coalesced as The Muppets. It was received to high acclaim, having made almost $170 million at the box office using only a $45 million budget. Naturally, Disney capitalized on this opportunity and created a sequel in 2014 titled Muppets Most Wanted. Many Muppetheads (Muppaholics? Muppinators?) hotly debate which film is better. Today, I seek to find which Muppets movie truly reigns supreme.

First off, it’s important to compare the plots of the two films, which is certainly harder than you’d think. The plot of the first film is undoubtedly the more grounded and relatable of the two, having many real human characters with real human conflicts. However, when you go to the movies to see a show about the Muppets, I don’t think you want to necessarily relate to a guy having issues with his girlfriend. The second movie, on the other hand, is certainly more bombastic and comical, but it lacks the realism that might bring it back to Earth a little bit. Both plots definitely have their strong and weak points, but I think I have to give it to Muppets Most Wanted. I laughed more when watching it, and I think that’s more valuable than having a believable plot in this case. 

Both of these movies, in true Muppets fashion, are musicals. They aren’t musicals in the sense that every spoken word is sung, but instead there are many songs dotted around the films that advance the plot or convey some sort of drama. Muppets Most Wanted beats out its predecessor in terms of quantity, at least: it has six songs opposed to The Muppets’ five. When it comes to quality, however, which film has better sounding songs? Honestly, I think it goes to Most Wanted once again. Not only do the songs in Most Wanted sound better, but they vary more, leading to songs that can better fit the scene’s emotion. One thing that The Muppets does better, however, is that the first song introduced a motif that was played throughout the whole film, which was pleasant for a music nerd like myself. 

All in all, I believe that Muppets Most Wanted is an overshadowed and underappreciated sequel. I think it bested its predecessor in almost every way, and it’s sad to see how little Most Wanted made in the box office as compared to The Muppets. Disregarding the numbers, Most Wanted will always be the more successful movie in my books.

The Muppets: 6/10

Muppets Most Wanted: 7/10

Categories: Entertainment, Opinion

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