review for The Muppet Movie on AllMovie

The Muppet Movie (1979)
by Brendon Hanley review

When The Muppet Movie was released in 1979, there was some doubt that Jim Henson's beloved puppets could successfully cross over from TV to feature films. The fears were assuaged as children and their parents lined up to see the off-the-wall Muppet humor and energy on the big screen. The film was such a hit that TV's The Muppet Show quickly went off the air and a sequel, The Great Muppet Caper, was released in 1981. Similar to the series, which featured a different celebrity every week, the movie parades a series of big-name cameos: Orson Welles, Richard Pryor, Bob Hope, and James Coburn, to name a few. Also like the TV show, the Muppets crew proves itself adept at staging -- and simultaneously parodying -- musical numbers. Henson voiced and operated five of the characters, but journeyman director James Frawley helmed the film. The Muppet Movie would be nominated for Academy Awards for best score and best song (the memorable "Rainbow Connection").