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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

The Muppets

By
Sr. Rose Pacatte, F.S.P.
Source: AmericanCatholic.org

It has been twelve long years since there has been a Muppet movie.  Walter (voice of Peter Linz), a new Muppet and a huge fan of the Muppets, the world’s biggest Muppet fan, and his “brother” Gary (Jason Segel) and his girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams) plan a trip to Hollywood.
 
They visit the Muppet Studio, now in ruins. When they learn that an oil magnate  (Chris Cooper) is buying the land, a man who has no love for the Muppets, and plans to tear down the studio to drill, Walter goes into action.
 
Walter, Gary and Mary track down Kermit the Frog and convince him that they have to save the studio by putting on a musical to raise money. Then they track down Miss Piggy who heads up Vogue’s Plus Size division in Paris (in a hair style like Vogue’s Editor-in- Chief Anna Wintour), Animal, Gonzo and the rest. They must also deal with the Muppet knockoff group, the Moopets.
 
“The Muppets” is a fun musical. I loved “The Rainbow Connection” but wondered a little at the chicken’s singing a version of CeeLo Green’s “Forget You” that everyone know used a different word beginning with “f” and now the Camilla and the Chickens are singing their version. Maybe this is why the film has a PG rating for some mild rude humor.
 
There are a lot of inter-textual references, that is, inside jokes about Muppets and Hollywood, plus much music and guest appearances, including politico James Carville – twice! The film is a very enjoyable crowd pleaser.
 
Themes of friendship, community, and solidarity abound.
 
“The Muppets” signals a move from Muppet-maker Jim Henson’s original creative home in New York to Los Angeles, after all, Disney acquired The Muppet franchise in 2004.


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Anthony Claret: The "spiritual father of Cuba" was a missionary, religious founder, social reformer, queen’s chaplain, writer and publisher, archbishop and refugee. He was a Spaniard whose work took him to the Canary Islands, Cuba, Madrid, Paris and to the First Vatican Council. 
<p>In his spare time as weaver and designer in the textile mills of Barcelona, he learned Latin and printing: The future priest and publisher was preparing. Ordained at 28, he was prevented by ill health from entering religious life as a Carthusian or as a Jesuit, but went on to become one of Spain’s most popular preachers. </p><p>He spent 10 years giving popular missions and retreats, always placing great emphasis on the Eucharist and devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Her rosary, it was said, was never out of his hand. At 42, beginning with five young priests, he founded a religious institute of missionaries, known today as the Claretians. </p><p>He was appointed to head the much-neglected archdiocese of Santiago in Cuba. He began its reform by almost ceaseless preaching and hearing of confessions, and suffered bitter opposition mainly for opposing concubinage and giving instruction to black slaves. A hired assassin (whose release from prison Anthony had obtained) slashed open his face and wrist. Anthony succeeded in getting the would-be assassin’s death sentence commuted to a prison term. His solution for the misery of Cubans was family-owned farms producing a variety of foods for the family’s own needs and for the market. This invited the enmity of the vested interests who wanted everyone to work on a single cash crop—sugar. Besides all his religious writings are two books he wrote in Cuba: <i>Reflections on Agriculture</i> and <i>Country Delights</i>. </p><p>He was recalled to Spain for a job he did not relish—being chaplain for the queen. He went on three conditions: He would reside away from the palace, he would come only to hear the queen’s confession and instruct the children and he would be exempt from court functions. In the revolution of 1868, he fled with the queen’s party to Paris, where he preached to the Spanish colony. </p><p>All his life Anthony was interested in the Catholic press. He founded the Religious Publishing House, a major Catholic publishing venture in Spain, and wrote or published 200 books and pamphlets. </p><p>At Vatican I, where he was a staunch defender of the doctrine of infallibility, he won the admiration of his fellow bishops. Cardinal Gibbons of Baltimore remarked of him, "There goes a true saint." At the age of 63, he died in exile near the border of Spain.</p> American Catholic Blog The greatest tragedy of our world is that men do not know, really know, that God loves them. Some believe it in a shadowy sort of way. If they were to really think about it they would soon realize that their belief in God’s love for them is very remote and abstract. Because of this lack of realization of God’s love for them, men do not know how to love God back. —Catherine de Hueck Doherty

 
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