Meet the Feebles

1989

Meet the Feebles

Critics Consensus

Dark and vulgar, Meet the Feebles is a backstage comedy featuring puppets that offers proof of Peter Jackson's taste for sheer outrageousness, even if it often lapses into pure juvenilia.

71%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 24

73%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 15,738
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Movie Info

Bearing the same relationship to The Muppet Show that Fritz the Cat does to Felix the Cat, Meet the Feebles is a gleefully rude, decidedly adult comedy about the backstage goings-on amongst an eccentric group of puppets the day before their televised variety special. Made by director Peter Jackson, creator of Bad Taste and Heavenly Creatures, the film features a wide ensemble of creatures known as "The Feebles," led by a walrus named Bletch, the show's gruff, corrupt producer. Amongst the central figures are Heidi the Hippo, the show's prima donna singer; the fey fox Sebastian, who acts as the show's director; and the lovable (and love-struck) Robert the Hedgehog. Other cast members include a sex-crazed rabbit suffering from VD, a junkie frog prone to Vietnam War flashbacks, and a rat who directs porno movies in the theater's basement. Romantic jealousies, drug deals gone wrong, murders, and other scandalous activities all threaten to wreak havoc amongst the cast, with all these problems reaching their climax on the evening of the big show (which comes complete with musical numbers). The film's extremely dark sense of humor is supported by skillful gross-out effects and a winningly irreverent attitude.

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Critic Reviews for Meet the Feebles

All Critics (24) | Top Critics (4)

  • While I found parts of it diabolically clever and funny, I thought the setup was overlong and certain aspects of the production either didn't work or were needlessly overdone.

    Jun 10, 2008 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • More generous observers might cite the parallel with bad taste guru John Waters; but compared to this shallow crap, even the Baltimore Bard's offerings run deep.

    Feb 9, 2006 | Full Review…

    Nigel Floyd

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Destined to stand as an unfortunate footnote to Mr. Jackson's career.

    Aug 30, 2004 | Rating: 2/5
  • A unique experiment, and one whose insights into human behavior aren't as important to it as its sense of curdled black humor. [But] we can't write it off as just a gonzo provocation.

    Apr 27, 2015 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…
  • O senso de humor grosseiro e apelativo poderia condenar esta estranha produção - caso não fosse estrelada por marionetes adoravelmente detestáveis.

    Aug 7, 2005 | Rating: 4/5
  • You'll laugh till your sides split

    Jun 11, 2005 | Rating: 3/5

Audience Reviews for Meet the Feebles

  • Jul 12, 2012
    The anti-Muppets movie showing the worse of the worse of showbiz with a cast of hideous puppets that talk too much and is hilarious all the way it lasts. It's just a shame that there's not a "main story" to tie the madness that is going on, just rather short stories of multiple characters and their downfalls
    Francisco G Super Reviewer
  • Oct 25, 2011
    "Alf: The Revenge". Hey, as crazy as this film is, why not have Alf get these dirtbags for stealing his likeness? At the very least, give "Sesame Street" their letter of the day: G, for gun, because if Jimmy Kimmel taught us anything about Bert and Ernie, it's that they're not gonna be using that G for gay. No horizontally striped turtlenecks in your bathhouse indeed, random cowboy Jimmy Kimmel who oddly sounded a little bit like Tom Hanks when the said striped turtlenecks were mentioned. Like Daniel Tosh, I like to keep my jokes going until only two people know what I'm talking about, but with that somewhat obscure Dan Tosh reference, I think that I'm out of people. Wow, instead of doing my job and telling people whether or not they should see this film, I'm sending them all to YouTube to look up a bunch of comedians. Really, while I'm at it, I should prepare people for this film by sending them to see Jeff Dunham, because if you can make it through his puppet "jokes" without becoming horrified, then this "Peter Jackson dark comedy" should be a cakewalk. Seriously though, as you would expect from classic Pete Jackson, this is absurd and disturbing. Still, that's what it's going for, so who cares? Certainly not the people who are writing the development, because this thing feels a bit lacking the immediate development department, which normally wouldn't be a huge problem, but here, it is, simply because these characters are so annoying. I know that these characters are just devices for nasty jokes, so we're not suppose to get invested in them too much, but they're so very annoying so very often. I can't tell if it's the faulty sound design or the fact that much of the storyline is so rushed that the get a consistent barrage of these characters, but eitherway, you hardly get any investment in them, at all. It doesn't help that the puppets are cheap and the voice acting is so average that you can't feel the humanity in the characters. Whether it grosses you out or you just find it annoying, this film is a bit tough to sit through, but really, if you can work past the flaws - which actually isn't a terribly difficult task - you'll see that the film is actually pretty enjoyable. As much as I've been referencing "Alf" and "Sesame Street", this is - at its core - a parody "The Muppets", more than anything. Looking at the quality of the puppet design and voice acting - like I did -, then of course it's gonna come out as cheesy, but really, that's the point, and although that stuff does get on your nerves, from a parody standpoint, it's a definate strength. Still, that satire would mean nothing if it wasn't effective, which leads to the question "Is the film funny?" Yes, it is, and much of the humor is surprisingly witty, to an extent. The parody is so very outrageous, yet toned down enough to not overshadow the environment, keeping it from being overwhelming, yet still unsubtle enough to still hit-home for the absurdity lovers. Granted, it's overwhelming in the first place, because the technical value is so spotty, but it's not hard to drown out the faults, especially with the jokes being as effective as they are. Not everyone's gonna pick up on the humor, because it's just so absurd, but if you can tap into that humor, you'll find a goldmine of entertainment value. At the end of the day, its spotty technical value, frantic storytelling and average performances dilute your investment and make the film rather annoying, but it's an easy task to make it through the faults, thanks the effective and very humorous satire that ultimately makes Pete Jackson's "Meet the Feebles" as entertaining as it is bizarre. 2.5/5 - Fair
    Cameron J Super Reviewer
  • Oct 21, 2011
    Totally not for children, the sick, grotesque version of the muppets made me laugh my ass off. It's amazing, and loved the song "Sodomy"
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Aug 12, 2011
    Oh... Oh god... Where do I start with this one? WHERE? I really don't know. The biggest reason anyone should watch this is because it's Peter Jackson's second film that he ever made. And it shows how much better he's gotten since then. To be frank, this is a pretty funny movie, but it relies on shock value almost exclusively for its punchlines. But the shock value is usually high enough to get away with this (one of the "milder" cases of shock value is a frog that has PTSD from being in Vietnam and is now addicted to every barbiturate known to man, this was the mildest gag I could think of in the whole film, it only gets worse from there). This is a film best watched in a large group with people going "AHHHHHH!!!" every minute or so. It's a fun experience. I don't recommend watching it by yourself though. Or with your parents around.
    Jacob E Super Reviewer

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