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Eccentric and lovable Big Bird lives a very carefree life with his friends on Sesame Street. But his happiness is cut short when a strict social worker named Miss Finch sends Big Bird away to live with a wacky family of Dodo birds. After a long week and feeling homesick, Big Bird decides that he has had enough and sets out back to Sesame Street. Word gets around and Big Bird is totally unaware that his friends are in search of him. But Big Bird better watch out because both Miss Finch and two unsuccessful carnival owners are also after him for their own purposes. Written by
A real fun movie that kids will love and adults will enjoy
The bird adoption agency comes across the case of Big Bird - who lives alone with no other birds around him. Working for the agency, Miss Finch convinces Bird to leave Sesame Street and move across America to live with the Dodo Family. When Bird misses his friends he leaves his new home to walk back home - not aware of how far it is. On his journey he meets many people, but several groups are out looking for him too - including all his friends from Sesame Street, a pair of circus owners and none other than Miss Finch herself.
Sesame Street is the benchmark for children's television forever as far as I'm concerned - educational and entertaining, it did such a good job that it took me years of school before I stopped pronouncing Z `zee' and did it properly as `zed'. This film version turns off the straight educational part of the service but ups the entertainment. The plot is a good excuse for a freewheeling adventure that has plenty of laughs. Big Bird's sections are a little slower, truth be told, but the supporting searches are very light and funny - Bird has to carry the message so it's fair it should be less funny.
The message takes over the educational stuff and is a nicely put one about accepting differences and still being friends. It isn't heavily made until the end, where the `with your own kind' argument is hammered home. This is a little heavy handed but can be forgiven due to the level of enjoyment the film gives. While not aiming at adults per se, the film has plenty for them
the humour never aims low but should be enjoyed by adults and children
alike. The funniest `adult' laugh is accidental and is where Maria turns to Sandra Bernhard and says `I'd like a tossed salad'! Unintentional laugh of course as the `other' meaning of that wasn't really known in the early 80's! Sorry - I'm just twisted! Outside of that the biggest laugh I had that kids won't get was the homage to North By Northwest's crop duster scene.
The cast is great. All the old Muppets from the street are here, although it may upset young fans to see Elmo sidelined to a silent appearance at a window but the rest are good stuff. Bird himself is a little dry but the rest are very funny in small amounts - Grover, Count, Cookie Monster and Oscar all had good lines, as did Ernie & Bert, but Telly is kind of the Muppet nobody really likes! The human cast of Sesame Street are cheerful and light - as you would expect, but it is the good cameos that spice it up. Chase has a great moment, Kermit reprises his reporter role but is clearly too big for this movie, Kellerman, Candy and Flaherty all have very small roles, although Flaherty has the best song.
Overall this is a very enjoyable movie that is perfectly pitched for adults and children - without doing what Pixar do and separating the material for each taste. The songs are not that great and there is at least one poor one in there, but the film has a fun energy to it that is wholesome but still entertaining and has great dialogue from start to finish. Love it!
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