Saturday, October 3, 2015

Kermit's Swamp Years

Year 7, Day 276 - 10/3/15 - Movie #2,168

BEFORE: Three of the Muppet performers carry over from "Muppets Most Wanted" - Steve Whitmire, Dave Goelz,  and Bill Barretta.  I may have got this just to fill up a DVD months ago, but it counts, it's in the collection, so I have to watch it.  And except for a Christmas movie, I'll be done with the Muppets after tonight, since I don't feel the need to watch "Muppets Wizard of Oz".

It's been raining pretty good the last two days, must be the effects of that hurricane in the Caribbean - but it's a good tie-in with a film set in a swamp.

THE PLOT: Kermit the Frog and best friends Goggles and Croaker travel outside their homes in the swamps of the Deep South to do something extraordinary with their lives.

AFTER: Really the first Muppet prequel, because it details Kermit's early life, before being discovered in the swamps, as seen in "The Muppet Movie".  But is it necessary?   Because Kermit has to leave the swamp for this story to be interesting, and then has to return to be in place for the start of their first film.

There's a lot of disagreeing between the characters, which makes the script feel half-written, like the performers don't really know where the story's going to go, so they better leave themselves a back-door for further script complications.  

Plus, there are no celebrity cameos, in fact no celebrities of any kind, just a couple of actors who you'll probably never see again in anything, but given their talent level, that's ultimately probably a good thing.  (For my linking purposes, that's downright terrible.)    

The scientist character turns out to be a biology teacher, and the film comes close to a social issue about the treatment of animals when it comes time for the frogs to be dissected in biology class.  Are we still doing that in the 21st century?  Can't we come up with some kind of computer program so kids can dissect a virtual frog instead of killing creatures in the name of education?  But, that being said, I doubt that any biology teacher would go out himself into a swamp to catch frogs, I'm guessing there would be some internal method for a teacher to order frogs through the educational system we have in place.  Nor would he need to go to a pet store, nor would a reputable pet store sell frogs to a school just so they could be killed.

(Geez, the character in "The Muppet Movie" who wanted to start a restaurant that served frog legs made more sense than this biology teacher does.)

NITPICK POINT: Where is this film set?  Because "The Muppet Movie" says that Kermit's swamp was in Florida, but at one point in the story, he encounters Jim Henson as a boy, and Henson's Wiki page says he grew up in Mississippi.  I doubt Kermit walked all the way across three states in a matter of days.  

NITPICK POINT #2: In the high-school scenes, the characters hide in lockers, all of which open quite easily, despite then being, you know, locked.   They all have combination locks on them, which apparently are useless, because they don't prevent the locker doors from opening.  I'm surprised the IMDB doesn't list this as an obvious goof, or am I the only person who cares about continuity?

Also starring John Hostetter, Kelley Collins Lintz, William Bookston, and the voices of Joey Mazzarino, Jerry Nelson, Cree Summer.

RATING: 3 out of 10 tire tracks

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