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Shrek a is Dreamworks 2001 CG movie. It was based off of a 1990 picture book by William Steig of the same name. Shrek is one of those seminal Non-Disney Princess movies and by that I just mean that it’s popular, like really popular. But just because something is popular does that make it good?

shrek, Donkey and Fiona shrek picture image

Shrek, Donkey and Fiona

Shrek is about a misanthrope Ogre who gets his swamp home invaded by Fairy-Tale creatures as Lord Farquaad wants the perfect kingdom and Fairy-tale creatures offend his senses or something. Lord Farquaad is trying to become king so he has to marry a princess, and he picks Princess Fiona who needs to be recused from a pretty dragon.

Shrek and a talking Donkey go to Lord Farquaad’s kingdom and Farquaad tells him if he recuse the Princess he will return the Swamp back to normal sans the enchanted little creatures. So Shrek and Donkey embark on a quest and save Fiona from the girly dragon.

Fiona at first isn’t happy that Fairy-tale logic wasn’t followed as her groom-to-be didn’t save her himself but on journey home Shrek and Fiona form an attachment. Fiona is also cursed as she turns into an ogre by night and only a kiss from her true love can break the spell. However Shrek over hears her and donkey talking about how she is ugly and hideous and he misconstrues it that they are talking about him and not her. Shrek is hurt and hasten Farquaad to them as they right outside the kingdom. Fiona is desperate to break her curse so her wants the wedding before sunset. Shrek and Fiona then part mad and sad about the misunderstanding. However Donkey convinces Shrek to break up the wedding and Fiona reveals her curse and when she and Shrek kiss she permanently becomes an ogre.

Shrek and Donkey's souvenir photo  shrek picture image

Shrek and Donkey’s souvenir photo

Shrek’s narrative is very simple, it’s a fun buddy journey story. Nothing really grand happens but that is not the point. It’s meant to a parody of Disney/fairytales. As far as that goes, Shrek wasn’t the first to this but there so much bile on the front maligning Disney. The first rule of parody is you have to love was you’re parodying and they clearly did not. Does that hurt the movie? Not really as it only is certain points in the film it’s still enjoyable. Shrek has some silly moments but the pacing is slow at points and some of the character are lacking.

Lord Farquaad and the magic mirror shrek picture image

Lord Farquaad and the magic mirror

First there is Shrek. Shrek is a big uncouth ogre or that how he appears and how he wants to be thought of. He makes the point that ogres have layers but the most revealing thing about him is that he is something of a culinarian. He also nice and sensitive but that is invention of the plot to add to the romance and drama. Donkey is annoying which is his point. Really the side characters are better and more likable. Lord Farquaad is hilarious with his Napoleon Complex although what is his deal? Is he a regent? How does marrying a random princess give him legitimacy? Gingy was my favorite characters and he was just in one scene but that was enough, and really it’s the sequel that give the cool side character more to do.

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Fiona kicking ass

Then we have the princess, Fiona. Fiona is a proper late 90’s early 2000’s princess gal, she is pretty and kick-ass. Her being no-nonsense and ass kicking seems to stems off from her ogre persona. She also an odd blend of romantic and practical which is refreshing. I have no issues with Fiona.

I suppose the only issue I could have is that she only accepts her ogre form when she deems attractive by a male. But the point of it was that beauty is in eye of the beholder and having an unconventional beauty as the princess is the point to Fiona’s curse as story piece.

Monsieur Hood singing  shrek picture image

Monsieur Hood singing

I have been down on CG’s animation movies in the past and while I prefer hand-drawn stuff, I like Shrek’s animations. It’s nice cartoony and warm.

The music uses preexisting songs but they are handled fine though I love that enchanting leitmotif which is used at the beginning and what Fiona sings when she accidentally blew up that bird. Also the Robin hood song was silly.

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Shrek is a fun and silly movie that pokes fun at fairytales/Disney tropes. Is it bad? No, it’s fine but I like the second one better.

I just want to plug The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, it was my favorite book as kid and parodies fairytales so  devilishly delightfully.

One Thought on “Shrek Review – Talking Donkeys are worth more than possessed toys

  1. Esmee on 01/22/2015 at 11:05 am said:

    I saw the second one first and the first one second. So, I was expecting the first film to be better than the sequel…it wasn’t. I haven’t seen the third movie because generally past the first sequels most franchises just go down hill.

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