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21 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

Why can't they do this with more Broadway shows?

8/10
Author: Caligula Constantine
7 December 2013

Shrek only ran on Broadway from 2008 to 2010, but in that small time frame producer Jeffrey Katzenberg apparently saw fit to create a DVD of the show. If not made for any other reason than to cash in on the Shrek film franchise, this is an immensely entertaining and hysterically funny show. I for one am very glad they made it available for home viewing. It's the next best thing to seeing a show live.

THE CAST

SHREK played by Brian d'Arcy James. Mr. James is perfect for the role and makes it his own while still calling to mind the film character. His voice is also terrific, and he gives us the show- stopping number "Who I'd Be", which is definitely the best song in the show.

Fiona played by Sutton Foster. Oh, how I love this woman. Her voice is beautiful! She can go from being ridiculously goofy and then suddenly convey genuine emotion in her songs. I love the song "I Know It's Today" and her antics in "Morning Person" are hilarious.

DONKEY played by Daniel Breaker. Donkey is one of the favorite characters. Breaker brings a sassier edge to Donkey but he's still that ass that simultaneously annoys us and makes us fall in love with him.

LORD FARQUAAD played by Christopher Sieber. To me, Sieber stole much of the show. He is on his knees the entire time with little legs dangling in front of him, which is quite amusing. As painful as that could have been, he makes it look effortless.

PINOCCHIO played by John Tartaglia. You may recognize him from the Playhouse Disney show "Johnny and the Sprites." I suppose playing a puppet is referencing the fact that he does all the puppeteering for the show.

THE MUSIC

The music, unfortunately, never reaches the heights of "The Lion King" or "Wicked." However, there is still something to recommend here. Several standout songs, including the already mentioned "Who I'd Be" and "I Know It's Today" are particularly good. The opening song, "Big Bright Beautiful World" is a good start, and Donkey's first song "Don't Let Me Go" is outrageously funny. The catchiest song is probably "Freak Flag" which is also very humorous. While these songs probably won't be considered classics anytime soon, they are cleverly written and are highly suitable for this show.

The show is probably suitable for ages 10 and up. There is some off-color humor here and there, but most of it would probably go over the kid's heads. (The transvestite wolf.) The gassy humor is obviously aimed at them. I, for one, could have gone without the fart/belch sequence. However, even I admit it was a little amusing. Donkey says 'damn' and 'hell' once each, but I think that was the extent of the language.

I very much wish that this DVD would be the start of a new trend. Having Broadway on demand in our living room would be fantastic. Will someone please film the "Pippin" revival next?

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A Nice Adaptation

9/10
Author: Hitchcoc from United States
25 June 2014

It's nice when the producers of these musical gems see fit to do a nicely cinematic rendition of such lays. After watching "Phantom" at the Royal Albert Hall and then this one as a presentation on Netflix, I'm hoping that more will be saved for always. This is not the world's greatest musical, but it is full of life, wonderful characters, and a nice edge to it. It has two or three very good songs and lots of topical material. The two leads in particular capture the Disney original and are able to poke fun at themselves. If there is a downside, it does go on a bit long and the fairy tale characters aren't used quite as much as they could be. I remember seeing Prince Farquhar on the Tony Awards and was amazed at his dexterity, playing the entire part on his knees. I would imagine that most of the theater goers already know the plot but the magic still gets us from the get go.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Worth viewing in spite of faults

Author: PhantomPimpernel from United States
9 January 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I found this show/recording to be a really mixed bag. It was pretty much 50/50 for me, but because what was good worked so well, I'm willing to bump the rating up from a 5 to a 6 or maybe 7 out of 10.

What worked:

The more humanoid of the movie mains. Shrek and Fiona were absolutely wonderful. They had fantastic songs written for them that fleshed out their characters ("Who I'd Be", "I Know It's Today", and "When Words Fail" being my favorites). Plus, having them being played by Broadway greats, Brian D'Arcy James and Sutton Foster definitely didn't hurt. Farquaad was also a treat. Christopher Sieber was able to consistently ham it up just the right amount whenever he was on stage.

The musical referencing. This was a really nice touch to the show since the Shrek franchise is known for referencing pop culture. Not only does the musical theater world move a little slower than the pop world, making for a bit of a safety net for the jokes over the next decade, but it's fitting for the musical version of Shrek, to in fact, joke about it's own genre.

The costumes and makeup. Of course, if you're doing a full-blown fairy tale musical attached to the Shrek franchise, you have to go big or go home. In a Broadway show, budget is especially important. It was clear that a lot of effort was put into transforming the actors from human to creature, and occasionally, back again.

What could have worked better:

Donkey. I just didn't see a whole lot of reason for his existence in the musical. Not a whole lot was added and he seemed to be around solely for the purpose of fan service. But then, I've never been totally won over by Donkey in the movies, so this could just be negative bias.

The scenery. I felt that the sets were often much darker (without light) than needed. Unless they really had to cover up machinery, I could find little justification for the darkness on stage. Some scenes, especially the lava bridge scene, could have really done with some more light. For example, the lava bridge scene had smoke effects and decent coloring on the backdrop, but the floor was completely black. I would have liked seeming some lava representation.

What didn't work:

Almost anything to do with the peripheral fairy tale characters. These guys were all such fun in the movies, but were turned into nothing but excuses for lame jokes and annoying voices. I had a mild sense of dread every time these guys appeared on stage. Their song "Story of My Life" is annoying and forgettable, while the song the musical tries to peddle as an individuality anthem, "Freak Flag," is bland and feels like an undeserved spectacle.

Pinocchio becoming the spokesman of the fairy tale creatures was also irksome. While the actor did a very good impersonation of the character, the character's voice is far too shrill to be featured so often.

Still, as stated previously, what worked, whenever it worked, was really wonderful and fun. Other strong parts of the show include "Big, Bright, Beautiful World", and "Things Are Looking Up in Duloc." In spite of it's weaknesses, I would definitely recommend this show to fans of Shrek and musical theater alike.

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Enjoyable fare, I'm a believer

7/10
Author: Parker Lewis from United States
11 March 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I saw this on a flight and it brought back fond memories of the movie.

I don't often see the musicals so it was great to see it on screen, although the magic may not be the same, but still. I was amazed by how Princess Fiona could transform so quickly into the Shrek-like character at the end. Maybe this is revealed in the DVD extras.

The ending...I would have liked to have seen all the cast members being presented to the audience, as we only saw clips of the main five. Also, Sutton Foster made a funny face the end, and I'm not sure why she did, but it was funny.

The end song "I'm a believer" was very rousing, especially seeing all the cast perform it.

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As good as the Movie

8/10
Author: cnycitylady from Brooklyn
7 November 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Shrek the Musical does its absolute best to best the original movie, the film that won the very first Academy Award for Animated feature, and the movie that all around the world kids and adults love--and it damn near succeeds.

This Broadway show keeps everything you love about the movie--The jokes, the quirks, the heartbreak and the love and adds fun, funny songs that only improve and enhance the story. The production team stitched together their musical enthusiasm and a narrative that absolutely everyone loves. With such a beloved movie as fodder for Broadway inspiration this could've been a disaster. It is clear that they cradled this movie close to their hearts and put their souls into every part of it. Shrek and Fiona fall in love and make you laugh and cry, but the side characters such as Pinocchio get a say in their fates too. Sutton Foster and Brian d'Aarcy James embody the two leads and you cannot wait for them to fall in love and take you on their wacky, fairy- tale adventure.

It's a bonus that Broadway allowed this production to be wide released in DVD format, because it is a treasure that everyone should experience. 8.5/10

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

great

10/10
Author: brodygaming
7 March 2017

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

my personal favorite anime of all time. the betrayal in it (no spoilers) was very sad. number 1 saddest anime betrayal. get out of my swamp! ha ha ha. very good, top 10 material. I really enjoyed this anime. I would watch 5000 times over. actually 9999 times over. actually 1000000 times over.

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