The Happytime Murders is a … different film. It’s one of those hard R comedies filled with sex and drugs, but for some reason has puppets and Melissa McCarthy. Set in a modern-day world of both humans and puppets, The Happytime Murders is a black comedy surrounding the suspicious murders of once famous puppets. On the case is Connie Edwards (Melissa McCarthy) and her ex-puppet-partner Phil Philips (Bill Berretta). To be completely honest, it’s a real-life Muppet murder-mystery.
I wasn’t expecting a lot when I purchased my tickets, just some sloppy, raunchy comedy. Yet, I went in with an open mind and to be honest, I actually laughed a bit. It felt like some weird Robot Chicken episode or some skit you’d see on Saturday Night Live. I was also surprised at the subtext of the situation. Surprisingly, the film tackles racism and segregation against puppets, which parallels the segregation and racism of black people. Similarly, Sausage Party did kind of the same thing by baiting viewers into watching a dark comedy, but putting a much deeper meaning and executed it better.
The whole message is pretty subtle though. There’s a few lines towards Phil Philips, the main puppet of the film, as he was the first puppet cop. BlackkKlansman does it better though, but I’ll give The Happytime Murders some credit for trying to make something substantial.
I think the worst thing about the film is the puppets. They’re just weird and ugly-looking. Just watching them is so unnatural, they’re like off brand Muppets. The Muppets were a little bit more lively in their movements, but these movie puppets are so static AND THEY HAVE LEGS. Seeing a puppet walk is definitely one of the worst things I’ve ever seen with my own two eyes. It’s so unnatural and I know I wasn’t the only one who felt like that. I would never watch the movie again just so I’d never have to witness that unholy image again.
Other than the puppets, another problem that I had was that the film was nothing really special. It was just another comedy that probably would’ve done better on Netflix. The Happytime Murders is something we, as audiences, have seen a million times and sometimes it just gets old. McCarthy, plays her same character as she does in almost every one of her films. This film is honestly just a re-imagining of her old film The Heat, but with a puppet instead of Sandra Bullock. The main issues is that this film is just a couple of good jokes surround by bad jokes with sex scenes in between. It’s nothing memorable, which I think is potentially a film’s fatal flaw.
Not to mention it’s predictable. I could guess who was behind all the murders within the first half of the film and it doesn’t really have any surprises. The whole film is banking off Melissa McCarthy’s star power and the pop culture reference of the Muppets.
Either way, I wouldn’t really recommend going out to see this film, there’s definitely better things to see this weekend.