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DVD Review: The Muppet Christmas Carol (20th Anniversary Edition)


A 20th anniversary edition of The Muppet Christmas Carol was recently released on Blu-ray. I previously did a review for this movie several years ago for the Kermit the Frog's 50th Anniversary releases, so lets see how this 20th anniversary edition compares. First off, this set include 2 discs. The first disc is the Blu-ray with the feature film and extra features. The second disc is just a digital copy of just the movie, so there's not much to talk about there. The Blu-ray looks great, as expected, but what's weird is that the "When Love Is Gone" song is completely absent. Shouldn't this 20th anniversary high-def Blu-ray version be the ultimate release? So why not have that song? It's a mystery, as there is no extra feature where someone talks about why it wasn't included. There are other nice extras though:

  • Disney Intermission: Press "Pause" and see what happens when the Muppets Show up at your door to sing your Christmas Carols - Muppet Style!
  • Muppet Audio Commentary: All New Audio Commentary from your favorite Muppets - Kermit, Gonzo, Rizzo, and More!
  • Muppet Holiday Sing-Along
  • Blooper Reel
  • Frogs, Pigs, and Humbug: A Behind the Scenes Look
  • Christmas Around the World with Gonzo and Rizzo
  • Audio Commentary from Brian Henson
  • Pepe's Profiles Presents: Gonzo, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Weirdo

The Muppet Christmas Carol is a Muppet movie version of Charles Dickens's classic tale. It was beautifully done and wonderful to look at, but it didn't have nearly as many laughs as The Muppet Movie. I suppose that's probably due to the nature of the original material, and also possibly because the main character of Ebenezer Scrooge wasn't played by a muppet, but rather Michael Caine. Don't get me wrong, though, there were still lines that just made me crack up laughing, and Michael Caine played Scrooge very well, so it was still a wonderfully enjoyable film to watch. Just don't expect it to be as light hearted as The Muppet Movie.

We all know the tale of A Christmas Carol, so do I really need to go over it again? Okay, how about I spend one sentence on plot summary. There's this mean old stingy man named Scrooge who is visited in the night by three ghosts who show him scenes past, present, and future Christmas seasons so that he may come to realize the misery he has brought on others and the joy that he is missing out on. Got it? There really isn't much else to tell about this movie. Gonzo plays the part of the story's author, Charles Dickens, and together with his little pal Rizzo the Rat they narrate the story for us.

The atmosphere and the scenery are all wonderfully done, and it really feels like a top notch production. As I said, it's not as funny as the first Muppet film, but then A Christmas Carol was never meant to be a comedy. It does bring about the laughs when appropriate, and leaves them out when they would otherwise spoil the mood. Obviously it's a great story, and even I'm sure we're all pretty sick of it by now seeing how almost every TV show tends to do one of these near Christmas, this version still feels like a good one to have available around the house. I totally wouldn't mind seeing it once a year during the holiday season.

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