A Christmas Carol has been retold over and over again, pretty much every year, in some shape or form, but what more of an inspired way for yet another adaptation of Dickens’ classic tome than for it to be told via the medium of Muppet?! Michael Caine plays the tight as a cats arse Ebeneezer Scrooge, who on Christmas Eve is visited by the ghosts of curmudgeons Marley and Marley, his deceased ex business partners. They warn him that if he carries on with his miserly ways, the chains he will bear in the afterlife will weigh him down more than any other. They leave him with the warning that he will be visited by three spirits from midnight. I’m sure you know the rest.
Despite the gothic tone of the film, The Muppet Christmas Carol is packed full of the usual charm and humour you would come to expect from the Muppets, which given that the film is narrated by Gonzo and Rizzo, you can expect some zany slap-stick humour. Although that’s usually the sort of thing that irritates the hell out of me, with this it’s tolerable and actually very funny. In the usual Muppet style, there’s a musical number or two, which you’ll have stuck in your head long after the credits have rolled. Even Michael Caine gets a song! Each the scenarios Scrooge is put through over the course of that fateful Christmas night has it’s own unique traits, and the usually bleak Christmas yet-to-come, actually has some rather funny moments, although it is the shortest of the segments. The overall running time is rather lean, with it only clocking in around 75 minutes, so you don’t find yourself checking your watch, and it’s not too long so the kids won’t start to fidget. This is probably the best adaptation of A Christmas Carol that I’m yet to see. Yes, that is including the hilarious Scrooged! This fun filled, heart warming family film is one the festive seasons’ all-time greats.