Fuzzy comedy is all stuffing (The Happytime Murders review)

What a bunch of Muppets that were involved in making this film! They took a fantastic original concept, and totally ruined it. What could have been a brilliant comedy in a new world has in fact just become another R rated shocker that mainly relies of puppets telling each other to F*** Off.

This film, clearly trying to have a race allegory at the heart of it, sees a rift in a world between Humans and Puppets, and joins together Private Investigator Phil Phillips and Detective Connie Edwards as they try to solve a series of murders with a mysterious connection. The cast is led by Melissa McCarthy, who does her usual shtick of swearing and making crude references to her body parts. More annoying is a scene where she snorts purple glittery cocaine before going full “child on blue smarties”. Leslie David Baker, known for playing Stanley in The Office (US), has a few funny lines but is mostly there to assert authority and try to progress the plot.

The Happytime Murders shares the same issue that Sausage Party had. The filmmakers knew they had been given the go to make a naughty adult film that looks like a kid’s film. Their thought process? Do the same puerile jokes but with a heap of totally unneeded swearing. The script is littered with horrible innuendos that just fall flat, and the inclusion of Muppets with ‘hair downstairs’ and silly string replacing another bodily fluid seemed to prove that the filmmakers went for the lazy, shocking route of filmmaking.

Thankfully, the film is under an hour and a half and it gets itself over and done with without too much messing about. The plot, while typical, offers some twists and does tie together nicely.  But if you want an R rated puppet show where you’ll actually laugh, I suggest you check out ‘Avenue Q’ instead, the Broadway musical that features puppets and real actors in a successfully crude and sweary romp.

3 Stars

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