Dorothy Gale lives with her Auntie Em and Uncle Henry in a trailer park in Kansas. Dorothy has dreams of becoming a famous singer, but when a tornado hits Kansas and Dorothy rushes to save Toto, her prawn (she couldn't afford a dog), she is whisked away to Oz where she meets the four witches (all played by Miss Piggy) and the Munchkins of Oz (the rats). On her way to see the Wizard, she meets the Scarecrow (Kermit), the Tin Thing (Gonzo), and the Cowardly Lion (Fozzie) who all wish to have something given by the wizard. On their way to Emerald City, they are captured by the Wicked Witch of the West (of course, Miss Piggy) and her flying monkeys (other muppets). When they finally make it back to Emerald City, the Wizard is really a man from Hollywood. But he "grants" their wishes, but what they wanted they already had inside (there's a lesson there). When Dorothy finally is back in Kansas, she becomes what she had wanted, a famous singer and on the Muppets Star Search show. Written by
Chris Hunter <DrEvilGuy200>
This isn't just bad. It's shockingly bad. Bad to the point that you really feel sorry for the Muppets being in it. It would have gotten just one star but it got another because Queen Latifah is in it.
There are two fatal flaws in it. First, and worst, is Ashanti. I'm sure she's a nice person, kind to the elderly and to small animals. But she cannot act for beans. She has one facial expression and reads her lines as if she were holding the script and reading them cold for the first time.
This would be bearable because I love the Muppets. But the script is a disaster. It references THE PASSION OF THE Christ, APOCALYPSE NOW, KILL BILL and (as best I could figure) the HBO series MISFITS OF SCIENCE. So there we have three R-rated movies and an adults only series that featured ample sex and violence as sources of material.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this meant as programming for children? Ozzie Osborne's children, maybe, but beyond them there's not a big potential audience for it.
Maybe if Frank Oz had directed this he would have shaped it into something great. With the exception of DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS I've enjoyed all of his live action movies. And I firmly believe that the right director can get a good, even excellent, performance out of just about anyone by working with them and forcing them to dig deep into themselves to find that spark.
The Muppets will live to fight another day. And Ashanti, unfortunately, is continuing her acting career. She's in the third RESIDENT EVIL movie playing a nurse. However, she only gets ninth billing so she won't be able to do a lot of damage. And I can hope to see her ripped apart by zombie dogs: that will make me feel better about the $1.99 I spent to rent this movie.
Go check out the original MUPPET MOVIE or, my favorite, THE MUPPETS TAKE MANHATTAN. They have appeal for all ages.
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