There’s a scene in the new “Muppets: Most Wanted” where the bad guy character being played by Ricky Gervais offers a British critic a bag filled with money as a bribe. He wants a good review for the touring Muppets show. The critic (played by “Downton Abbey” dad Hugh Bonnieville) gladly takes the loot.
It’s a moment that kills the credibility of the film. Everyone knows it takes at least TWO bags filled with money to buy a good review. (I’m just joking in case my editor reads this).
The scene does open up the question about what Gervais thinks about reviews. He’s had his share of good and bad ones over the years.
“You like it when they get it,” Gervais says. “If you only believe the good ones and don’t believe the bad ones, then that’s a slippery slope. The best thing to do is celebrate the people who like the film and know that it was made for them. I don’t do anything for reviews or audience or rewards. You do it for yourself and like-minded people.
“I love to get good reviews and I would be lying if I said otherwise. But, you really mustn’t worry about it. It will drive you crazy.”
He adds that if you are worried about trying to please everyone, then you end up not pleasing anyone. And, in this social media world, there are a lot of people who are offering up their opinions as to whether they were entertained or not by something Gervais has done.
“Now, everyone’s a journalist. Everyone’s a reviewer,” Gervais says. “With Twitter and Facebook it’s like glorified graffiti. If you care about that then you might as well go around to every toilet wall in the world and get offended when they mention you.”
Gervais pauses and then adds, “Having said that just say (expletive deleted) things about the movie. Please. If not for me, for the kids.”