At World Wide Studios, the Muppets have gathered to have the first screening of The Muppet Movie about ho they all met. The movie opens over a swamp with Kermit playing the banjo and singing “Rainbow Connection.” He happens to meet an agent in need of direction who tells Kermit he should get in to show business with his talents. When he hears he can make millions of people happy and sets off for Hollywood. On the way he runs into Doc Hopper, an owner of a fried frog-legs restaurant who wants Kermit him to be the spokes-frog for the company. Kermit refuses and continues on his way but Doc isn’t going to give up that easily.
This year marks The Muppets Movie’s nearly 35th anniversary and it has been entertaining people both young and old since its release in 1979. The Muppets were created by Jim Henson and with the help of Frank Oz, they created some of the most iconic characters for so many people. This movie is a classic that I’ve been a fan of since I was a young kid.
In this debut movie directed by Jim Frawley, they have had some of the biggest actors and comedians in Hollywood made cameos in the movie including:
Edgar Bergen as Himself and Charlie McCarthy
Milton Berle as Mad Man Mooney
James Coburn as the El Sleezo Café Owner
Dom DeLuise as Bernie the Agent
Elliott Gould as Compère
Bob Hope as an ice cream vendor
Madeline Kahn as an El Sleezo patron
Carol Kane as a “myth” (summoned by name)
Lisa Henson as Emma Jean
Cloris Leachman as Miss Tracy, Lew Lord’s secretary
Steve Martin as an insolent waiter
Richard Pryor as a balloon vendor
Telly Savalas as El Sleazo tough
Orson Welles as Lew Lord
Paul Williams as El Sleazo pianist
The film is newly remastered and presented in 1080p AVC. Its simply amazing the care that was put in to this release. The picture looks brilliant and bright because I’m sure before the remaster, the print had faded with washed out color. The Muppets themselves are very colorful puppets in their clothing and they look so much brighter than ever before. Being that the movie is almost 35 years old, there is some grain in the film but it’s the right amount. However, there are some scenes that are a little darker that have some contrasting issues but its to be expected. I’m very impressed with this release.
Like the brilliant film transfer, the audio compliments the blu-ray. The sound is also an all new mix in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and it is excellent. The film is filled with musical segments and its during these parts where the mix really shines. The music fills the theater with the memorable songs that have never sounded so good. When “Can you Picture That?” By Dr. Teeth and The Electric Mayhem began playing, the bass has a richness and depth that sounds amazing. The only problem throughout the movie is the highs are a little muffled at times in some of the dialogue and effects but I’m glad they never sound over processed.
The release is packed with cool bonus features that really tailor to children and the fans.
All-New Frog-E-Oke Sing-Along – this bonus feature is a karaoke style bonus where you can jump to a certain song and sing along.
Jim Frawley’s Extended Camera – this segment is some extensive screen testing by the director with the Muppets to see how to position cameras and puppeteers for shooting the movie. It includes some unseen footage.
Pepe Profiles – “Kermit: A Frog’s Life” Featurette – this featurette is hosted by Pepe as he interviews some of the Muppets about Kermit and his accomplishments.
Doc Hooper’s Commercial – this is the original uncut version Doc Hopper’s commercial form the movie.
-Disney Intermission, Starring the Muppets – Like with some of the other Muppet films when the movie is paused, a screen saver with parts of the movie and the Muppets run around the screen. There are a few different segments so the same parts don’t get shown all of the time.
Blu-ray Combo Pack
1 Blu-ray Disc
1080p MPEG-4 AVC
English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
German Dolby Digital Mono
I’m incredibly impressed with the release and Disney has brought the film to new levels with the format. The positives with the remaster make the few minor imperfections very easy to overlook. Like I’ve said, remastering depends on how the preservation of the source material and for the almost 35th anniversary, its never looked better. For fans or for movie watchers that want to see the classic for the first time, I highly recommend picking this edition up.