The Muppets

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
The Muppets Movie Poster Image
Parents recommendPopular with kids
Muppet comedy offers memorable laughs, musical numbers.
  • PG
  • 2011
  • 98 minutes

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 46 reviews

Kids say

age 5+
Based on 75 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

Although the movie aims to entertain rather than educate, there's a worthwhile lesson in teamwork and trying your best to make a difference. Kids unfamiliar with the Muppets will also learn about the characters' history and the years they spent on television with famous guest hosts.

Positive Messages

The characters' hard work on their big show provides positive messages about collaboration, teamwork, encouragement, and being proud of doing your best, no matter what happens in the end. The Muppets also have really strong friendships, and Walter and Gary are good examples of siblings who work together instead of tear each other down.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Walter is the Muppets' No. 1 fan and gives Kermit the encouragement necessary to believe in the Muppets again. Kermit leads his fellow Muppets to glory with his optimism and support. Gary is a really generous brother, but he also learns when to prioritize Mary and her needs. The main bad guy stays pretty bad, but his henchmen have their moments of redemption.

Violence & Scariness

A big brawl breaks out in Animal's anger management class, with several tackles/punches thrown. Miss Piggy leads a stealth team of Muppets to kidnap Jack Black and keep him "hostage" in order to host the telethon. Gonzo engages in some death-defying stunts, and there are slapstick gags (including loud explosions) throughout the movie. The villain's henchmen are a little bit threatening; one looks pretty monstrous, and they both wield potential weapons at one point. A spoofy reality show within the movie is called Punch Teacher.

Sexy Stuff

As always, Kermit and Piggy have a complicated romantic relationship. Gary and Mary hold hands, embrace, and kiss sweetly in one quick scene. Brief Muppet kissing.

Language

The words "butt," "idiot," and "oh God" are used a couple of times, and some swine humor is directed at Miss Piggy and another performing pig. Fozzie has "fart shoes."

Consumerism

Red Bull is displayed prominently in one scene, and a large poster for Cars 2 (also released by Disney) shows up more than once. Kermit drives around in a Rolls Royce chauffeured by an '80s robot. The robot tries to serve guests sodas from that decade, like Tab and New Coke. Miss Piggy works at Vogue in Paris. The Muppets have strong merchandising ties to toys, apparel, accessories, home decor, and -- of course -- their own programs and movies on DVD.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Muppets is as kid-friendly (and fun for adults) as all of the popular Jim Henson characters' early movies. Families familiar with the Muppet gang will know to expect a romantic subplot from Kermit and Miss Piggy, some slapstick stunts/humor courtesy of Gonzo, and silly jokes thanks to Fozzie the Bear. There's also one scene with a fist fight/brawl, some romance between human characters Gary and Mary, the words "butt" and "idiot," and some mild insults aimed at the Muppets. Expect a few noticeable product placements and tons of celebrity cameos.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byncooganore August 1, 2020

The Muppets

There is The Moopets too and Tex Richman was destroying the Muppet Show from the night and Gary, Mary has been dating for 10 years and Gary didn’t want to leave... Continue reading
Adult Written byaholod June 17, 2020

5 and 8 year old demanded I turn it off

This really didn't seem like a children's movie. There was a lot of adult humor and themes, and the plot was too difficult for my 5 year old to under... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byposhspice4life April 28, 2017

WHERE'S ITS OSCAR???!

The Muppets is a inspirational, emotional, and poignant film of the reality of fame. If you don't cry during the Mary and Gary breakup scene, you probably... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old January 14, 2014

RATED PG FOR HUOMOR

I KNOW THIS MOVIE IS FUN BUT I NEED TO TELL YOU.....................
THIS MOVIE IS FINE FOR 4+

What's the story?

Gary (Jason Segel) and Walter (voiced by Peter Linz) aren't just brothers; they're best friends. When Gary announces that Walter can come with him and his girlfriend, Mary (Amy Adams), on a trip to Los Angeles, Walter -- the Muppets' biggest fan -- immediately makes plans to visit the Muppets' studio. But when they get there, Walter discovers that an evil oil baron named Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) plans to tear down the now-crumbling studio for the oil underneath it. The only loophole is that the Muppets have one week to pay $10 million to buy back the building. Walter enlists Gary and Mary to track down Kermit (Steve Whitmire) and spur him to action. Kermit agrees that the only way to raise the money is to put on a show, so the four of them travel across the country (and beyond) to reunite Piggy, Fozzie, Gonzo, and all of the retired Muppets for one all-or-nothing telethon to save the studio.

Is it any good?

Whether you're planning to relive your childhood, introduce your kids to the Muppets, or just see a movie together, THE MUPPETS is a joy for the entire family. For many of today's parents, the Muppets are an immediate catalyst of nostalgia -- and they, along with all kids (whether they're already fans or are discovering Jim Henson's legendary creations for the first time) will delight in the reintroduction of everyone's favorite felt friends. Self-proclaimed puppet lover Segel lovingly depicts the story of the Muppets' biggest fan (clearly a stand-in for himself) and how one person's faith convinces Kermit and the gang to reunite. Kermit, as usual, is the heart of the story, but he's joined by the charming Walter, who -- as the newest addition to the Muppet family -- is a winning combination of funny, humble, and sweet. Segel and Adams make an adorable on-screen couple, and their ability to project innocent fun is irresistibly charming.

A series of celebrity cameos -- including everyone from The Devil Wears Prada's Emily Blunt to Whoopi Goldberg -- is a treat for grown-ups. The music mixes Muppet favorites like "Rainbow Connection" with catchy covers like "Forget You" and original songs written by Flight of the Conchords star Bret McKenzie.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's messages about sibling unity and teaming up to make a difference. How are Walter and Gary different than most on-screen brothers? What do the main characters learn about themselves during the movie?

  • Which characters in the movie are meant to be role models? How can you tell?

  • Do the Muppets still appeal to audiences of all ages? What makes them so popular? How are the actors' interactions with the Muppets different than movies that feature CGI creatures?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love to laugh

Themes & Topics

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