Jim Henson: Idea Man Review: A Heartfelt Tribute to a Creative Visionary

Jim Henson: Idea Man Review


Ron Howard’s documentary, “Jim Henson: Idea Man,” provides an affectionate and nostalgic look at the life and career of the legendary puppeteer, Jim Henson. While it adheres to a conventional structure, the film compensates with a treasure trove of archival clips that evoke memories of Henson’s groundbreaking work.

The film chronicles Henson’s journey from his early years in puppetry to becoming a key figure behind iconic properties like The Muppets, Sesame Street, and The Dark Crystal. It also delves into his creative and romantic partnership with his wife, Jane Henson. Through interviews with family members and collaborators, including the incomparable Frank Oz, we gain insight into Henson’s artistic process and the magic he brought to our screens.

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The film’s strength lies in its extensive use of archival material. Watching behind-the-scenes glimpses of Muppet performances and Henson’s innovative techniques is akin to revisiting childhood memories. Howard captures the essence of Henson’s spirit – his boundless creativity, humor, and unwavering dedication. The film feels like a heartfelt tribute rather than a detached biography.

“Jim Henson: Idea Man” manages to be adequately inspirational without veering into hero worship. It’s a delightful watch for fans of Henson’s work, reminding us of the magic he brought to our lives. If you’re curious about the man behind the Muppets, this documentary is a fitting tribute.


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