Sunday, November 27, 2011

Life's Like A Movie

Kermit's back!

Yes, The Muppets is out. If you are a lifelong fan or a Muppet newbie, you will love this film. It's the only movie theater I can recall being in where the audience literally cheered and applauded throughout. It is relevant to the times but remains true to its roots. I don't know how they did it, but they did. 

There are endless funny moments, with several throwbacks to the late 70's/80's which will thrill the original Muppet generation. And there are moments where I got completely choked up in a good way. It was like entering a Time Machine to your younger self! The theater we were in was packed so our group had to break up in order to find seating. I sat with my brother-in-law and he was so sweetly invested in the plot -- he kept making concerned noises when any of the Muppets were sad or in any kind of trouble. I just about lost it twice -- once in the opening of a show they put on and once during a very sweet nostalgic duet.

Here is one of the many hysterical trailers out there. 
You gotta love that the turkey goes after Chef. 

But if you don't believe me, Rotten Tomatoes gave it 5 stars and a score of 98 out of 100. Not too shabby!

So how does this all play into a blog about not eating animals but being nice to them? Well, it goes back to the weirdness of our society. How can we claim to be "the biggest fans" of puppets that represent different animals --- but then eat those same animals? Omnivores at this point may be throwing up their hands in laughter, crying out, "Of for the love of G-d, give it a rest! It's just a movie! Lighten up!"

But think about it. We are so entrenched in what has been defined for us as normal, that it is easy (and natural) to miss the irony of our thinking. We grow up surrounded by animals in our books, our walls, our stuffed animals, our cartoons -- we love them. But we think nothing (literally) of eating them and having them live unimaginable lives behind conveniently placed walls. I love this clip by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau that illustrates this beautifully.

I think one of the most beautiful Muppet moments was the end of the first movie. The line, "Life's like a movie, write your own ending," always spoke to me, but even more so since I've pulled out of the violent industries that do unimaginably cruel things to the animals we grew up adoring. As much as individualism is revered, there is still a lot of pressure to do what everybody else is doing. So hail to Kermit!

And while we're reminiscing, here's another classic to enjoy...

I'd love to hear back from you! Favorite Muppet character? Favorite Muppet Show episode? Memories of seeing the original movie? Have you seen the new movie? (And check out The Muppets activity page - lots of cool stuff to make! Also, you can add your own Mahna-Mahna online...Funny!)


  1. As always a delightful blog entry! I think I will have to go with wise old Kermie for my fav, but I also have a soft spot for Animal. I barely remember the first movie but what I do remember very clearly is singing The Rainbow Connection in 6th grade choir and that 6th grade was literally a turning point for me and it all had to do with music. Rainbow Connection is a marker of that time.

  2. That's so funny, Tracy! Listening to that cassette, particularly the scene where Animal eats that pill and gets super tall, made me want to learn to play flute!

  3. I enjoyed the new film and got choked up during Rainbow Connection and when Kermit was looking at the paintings of his old friends and singing about them only being pictures in his mind. My other favorite moment was the Muppet or Man song.

    I'd say my favorite Muppet character is Gonzo. I have always liked it that even amongst Muppets, he's the oddball. Plus, his best friend/girlfriend is a chicken. How can I not love that?

  4. Gonzo is amazing. Loved the song in the original movie he sang. Plus Muppets from Space centered around him!

  5. I loved that song too! My favorite lyric from it is, "There's not a word yet for old friends who've just met." It really captures that feeling when you meet someone and instantly connect with them.