By Don Simpson | May 20, 2014
Other than knowing that Keith & Heath features the two titular puppets, I went into writer-director Andy Young’s (The Crime of the Century) eight-minute short film with absolutely no idea what to expect. And, I gotta say, I was pretty blown away!
The Keith and Heath puppets have a familiar Sesame Street-like air about them, with a craftfully-rendered design (Puppet Designers: Laura Dávila, Victoria Prescott & Laura Stephens) that is more nostalgic than mere copycatting. The voicing (Jon Cozart), puppeteering (Jennifer Bateman & Christian Haigis) and production design (Emily Haueisen) are so spot-on perfect, that it is difficult to believe that this is not a Sesame Workshop or The Jim Henson Company production.
On top of all that, there is a bevy of Austin-based talent that appears as the puppets’ human counterparts — such as Sam Eidson, Byron Brown, Katie Folger and Tony Vespe. Unlike some of the actors who have appeared as humans in the Muppets films (especially The Muppets and Muppets Most Wanted), these actors actually know how to interact with the puppets without looking lost or stilted. It certainly helps that the dialogue is very well-written and Young directs Keith & Heath with a keen eye for details. So, move over James Bobin and Nicholas Stoller, I think we have a new writer-director (and crew) to take over the reigns of the next Muppets film: The Muppets Go Indie!
But let’s just cut to the chase, here. I cannot think of a better way to spend eight minutes on a Tuesday than by watching this super fun new puppet-comedy. So, without further ado… Here it is!