Which begs the question, is all this misty eyed romance just some idle nostalgia trip on my part, or is The Muppets' return to the big screen a genuinely entertaining family film which cinema has been crying out for since...well The Muppet Treasure Island? Bit of both, but stay with me for one moment...
The film's premise is stupendously simple, lifelong Muppet fans Gary (Jason Segal), his girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams) and brother Walter (the newest Muppet creation) travel to L.A. to visit the now decrepit Muppet Theatre where they stumble across a dastardly plan where an oil tycoon (brilliant turn from Chris Cooper) plans to destroy a theatre to dig for...well...oil, obviously. This of course sparks the trio to reunite all our favourite Muppets; Kermit, Piggy, Fozzy, Animal, Gonzo etc to put on one last show and save their theatre.
The most marvellous thing about the film is Segal's script caters very much towards fans who have grew up with the original Muppet films and television show. Any Henson geek can pick out a tonne of Easter eggs and nods towards the past efforts, summed up wonderfully when Kermit points out how to reunite the whole gang, "Haven't you seen our first movie? We drive!" Of course this isn't a film just for overgrown children like myself, the Muppets' innocent, loveable, old-school humour still remains and something all of the family can enjoy with sincere glee.
Very much like their past films, the movie is yet again littered with a delightful array of cameos from Jack Black, Dave Grohl, Sarah Silverman, Alan Arkin, Whoopi Goldberg, Selena Gomez and actors featured in all the hit US comedy shows at the minute from the likes of How I Met Your Mother, Parks and Recreation, Community, Modern Family and one outstanding cameo from a certain member of the cast of The Big Bang Theory.
Then there's the blissfully catchy musical score, written by Flight of the Conchords' own Bret McKenzie. Even walking out of the cinema I was humming the song Life's a Happy Song performed by all the cast at some stage or another at various points of the film, then there's the now Oscar nominated Am I a Man or Am I a Muppet? performed by Segal and Walter, Kermit's moving solo number Pictures in my Head and the classic song from the original Muppet movie Rainbow Connection even features to emotional effect towards the film's climax. And yes, Mah Na Mah Na even gets a play.
It's time to start the music, it's time to light the lights, it's time to get things started for the most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, muppetational feel good family film you'll see in the cinema this year. The Muppets is simply delightful from the beginning to end. You'll smile, laugh and even at times shed a few tears. The songs, the performers, the colourful sets are just perfect. If you don't agree then...Mah Na Mah Na.
The Muppets is in cinemas everywhere now.
*My 4 year old self wanted to give it 10/5