Saturday, May 19, 2007

Shrek The Third

In 2001 I reviewed and was pleasantly surprised with the first installment of Shrek. I have to admit, over the years it has been kind of nice to see that review in all kinds of languages as it was picked up by various world-wide Medias. I enjoyed it enough to give it 7 out of 10. In 2004 I went to see and review Shrek 2. I also enjoyed it, and later on gave comment on the DVD, and 3-D special feature that came with the Shrek 2 DVD. I enjoyed Shrek 2 as well as the first and gave it a 7 out of 10. Not great reviews, but one that showed I really enjoyed the two movies. Shucks I even purchased the DVD’s of both features. It was obvious I would be there opening day to see Shrek the Third and sure enough, I was.

Truth is, while not giving what I would call great reviews of the Shrek series, it is a series I have enjoyed, and appreciated for all kinds of reason. There were the characters, the two sided humor, some things for kids, some for adults with subtle tendencies, and so much more. I was looking forward to this new installment where I had heard some “pro” reviewers stating it was the best Shrek of the three movies. With comments like that, what else would I consider doing on a Friday morning of release day?

It didn’t take long for me to come to my conclusion of Shrek 3, while some of the great messages were still there, things like beauty is in the eye of the beholder, true love conquers all, realizing your full potential and more, there just seemed to be something missing. Don’t get me wrong, there were certainly scenes in the movie that was hilarious, one in particular I loved was seeing Snow White getting ready to go to battle with the tunes of Led Zeppelin and Heart in the background. There were other things like seeing Donkey loving on his babies, but there just didn’t seem to be the heart I felt in the first two films. Not only was the script poor, the animation had a lot to be desired. When it came to comparisons between the first two films, there was little of value.

I was talking to some friends about the movie and believe one of the reasons many won’t like it as much is the lack of new character development. I know this is something that doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense, especially when looking at an animated film, but I believe this to be the greatest draw back to Shrek the Third. Sure we see more detailed roles for some of the previous characters, but all new characters, with the exceptions of babies, are predominantly all human. For me at least, I found this a drawback.

The story itself is noble enough in its attempt. We see the potential for an individual to come out of their shell, to see themselves as more valuable than they initially thought. Shrek, Donkey, and Puss N Boots are there to help young Prince Artie see his potential. We see people, even those at the bottom of the bottom have potential and possibility, but the the journey along the way to that discovery is boring, and not very entertaining with the exception of a few moments.

I wish I could say more positive about this movie; I really do as I long for and desire quality family movies, and am a special lover of quality animation. That being said, I can recommend seeing this movie, but not enough to pay full price. I would also say, don’t go expecting a great movie, and I certainly wouldn’t compare it to the first two because it isn’t nearly as entertaining. It is worth seeing though, if for no other reason the music and the ability to incorporate moments of comedy. There are a few great scenes featuring Puss N Boots as well as some of the female characters of the film. Unfortunately there is not enough of those as a large portion of the film focuses on Prince Charming, a character I just don’t like much. Maybe that was just me though, I don’t know, you can see for yourself but don’t complain if you aren’t crazy about the movie. You can focus on the potential to help others, and of the potential to see more in yourself than what you realize. Whether that help comes from others or comes from God, there are lessons we can all learn. If not for those lessons, this movie would have been a wait and see on the DVD recommendation, but because those lessons are there, because they are things we can learn from, it makes this movie worth seeing, just not for full price.

Philippians 4:13 - Christ gives me the strength to face anything.

On a scale of 1-10, if you take Shrek 1, Shrek 2 and Shrek 3, add them all up, you will have Shrek with a 6, and that is the score I give this one, a 6 out of 10.

For the following video, click on the link if the video don't show. If the video does show, click on the video.

Shrek Featurette

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