Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: The Muppets is Certified Fresh

Plus, Arthur Christmas, Hugo, and three others also Certified Fresh -- a new record!

by | November 22, 2011 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a record six Certified Fresh movies, including a Muppet caper (The Muppets, starring Jason Segel and Amy Adams), a special delivery (Arthur Christmas, with voice work from James McAvoy and Hugh Laurie), and a cinematic fantasia (Hugo, starring Asa Butterfield and Chloe Moretz). What do the critics have to say?

The Muppets


It’s been more than a decade since the Muppets were in multiplexes, but critics say it was worth the wait: they find The Muppets to be a joyous musical comedy that preserves the sunny spirit of Jim Henson’s creations while managing to bring the gang into the 21st Century. Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, and the rest of the Muppets are coaxed out of retirement by Walter (as well as non-Muppets Gary (Jason Segel) and Mary (Amy Adams), a huge fan who’s afraid their old theater is about to be destroyed by shady developers. The pundits say the Certified Fresh Muppets was clearly a labor of love for writer and star Segel, and his respect for the Muppets combined with smartly self-reflexive storytelling results in a movie that should please old fans and young viewers alike. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we run down all of Jim Henson’s movies, and find out Kermit and Miss Piggy’s Five Favorite Films.)

Arthur Christmas


The good folks at Aardman have made plenty of delightfully offbeat animated films, and critics say the trend continues with Arthur Christmas, a sweet and eccentric dose of yuletide cheer. It’s the story of Santa Claus’ son Arthur (James McAvoy), who must deliver a present to a sad little girl after Papa Noel neglects to visit her house. Along the way, we learn about Santa’s state-of-the-art headquarters up at the North Pole. The pundits say the Certified Fresh Arthur Christmas is endlessly inventive, filled with witty sight gags, wonderful vocal performances, and an unconventional but undeniable sense of holiday cheer.



Martin Scorsese made a family movie? In 3D? He sure did, and critics say Hugo is a dazzling affair, visually rich and emotionally heartfelt in equal measure. Hugo (Asa Butterfield), and orphan living in a Paris train station, teams up with some new friends on a quest to find a secret left to him by his father. The pundits say the Certified Fresh Hugo is an extravagant, elegant fantasy with an innocence lacking in many modern kids’ movies, but it’s also an intensely personal film for Scorsese, one that emanates an unabashed love for the magic of cinema.

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

Disney Channel Paramount crime Syfy Premiere Dates Britbox cooking IFC Films Reality AMC Apple Masterpiece Creative Arts Emmys Spring TV Calendar Watching Series DC streaming service Columbia Pictures Schedule Ghostbusters Amazon comiccon transformers Extras Pop Toys Certified Fresh Musical YA FOX aliens Lucasfilm dc Superheroe TLC GIFs BBC FXX hist Nominations Star Wars cinemax medical drama Photos Fantasy President TBS cops golden globes Sundance Now Freeform Reality Competition Animation mutant cults 2015 TIFF Fox News Martial Arts sports BBC America social media Fall TV ratings Super Bowl Mystery Tomatazos USA Esquire Winter TV MTV Mary Tyler Moore Walt Disney Pictures discovery Summer Best and Worst Podcast TCA 2017 Western Biopics singing competition Warner Bros. The Arrangement Pirates VICE politics National Geographic binge Action Cartoon Network CMT PaleyFest diversity Holidays ESPN ITV Star Trek The CW crossover OWN APB boxoffice Hulu IFC period drama Drama TV Land blaxploitation crime thriller Kids & Family Comedy Infographic Cosplay E! Horror Rom-Com Song of Ice and Fire NBC Emmys science fiction zombies Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Trivia SDCC streaming Bravo composers unscripted Showtime History Thanksgiving 24 frames SundanceTV cats justice league what to watch Grammys First Look WGN 21st Century Fox war El Rey Oscars Lifetime YouTube Premium Nat Geo GLAAD romance TruTV 45 Crackle E3 dramedy Nickelodeon Red Carpet historical drama NYCC PBS Mindy Kaling Lionsgate supernatural based on movie Country Acorn TV Comic Book DC Comics VH1 Election CBS All Access CNN Opinion 2017 Ellie Kemper American Society of Cinematographers harry potter Shondaland TNT dceu Countdown Awards Polls and Games Character Guide Christmas docudrama FX MSNBC finale talk show robots See It Skip It Paramount Network Sneak Peek GoT TCA Set visit psycho LGBTQ Rock political drama Sony Pictures Universal Valentine's Day Comedy Central Sundance Ovation A&E Starz SXSW Box Office ABC Family YouTube Red Disney DC Universe Rocky BET zombie adventure RT History 007 vampires Year in Review Music sitcom crime drama thriller USA Network Dark Horse Comics 20th Century Fox festivals technology Pixar Interview Tumblr Marvel DirecTV police drama Winners X-Men Marathons ABC CBS 2016 travel Musicals Netflix HBO Sci-Fi Logo Video Games Writers Guild of America TV Superheroes Food Network Trailer biography Teen Spike CW Seed Adult Swim serial killer spy thriller TCM