Shrek the Third (2007)
User ReviewsReview this title
Shrek finds himself inheriting his father-in-law's crown and learns that Fiona is pregnant. Predictably, both of these eventualities play pretty dissonantly on the big green guy's insecurities, and he goes a-questing to locate the next-in-line of succession - a young, dejected, high school kid. Meanwhile, charming has developed even more of an attitude problem, and is putting together a whole battalion of people with grudges.
One of the themes of the first two Shrek films was 'don't judge a book by its cover'. Shrek III takes the theme a little farther and puts a different spin on it. The lesson learned here is "don't judge yourself superficially." And it works. My rating of six is based solely on the entertainment value of the film. This film is not quite as well-paced and well-directed as the previous two films, and Charming is simply not the heavy-weight heavy that his mom was. Nevertheless, it's still worth a look, and still carries positive messages entertainingly.
And it tries, it really did try. To its credit, there were several very clever scenes. The typical Snow White's gift with animals takes an awesome turn, and I can guarantee that you will never laugh harder at a death scene than the one of this movie. The animation? Top-notch.
I just guess effort doesn't always beat out sheer inspiration. A film with a few moments does not win against a good, simple movie.
The desire to produce a film merely ended up as a plot device to get Shrek and Fiona back to their beloved swamp. A long, boring plot device. With the passing of King Harold, Shrek and Fiona are heirs to the throne of Far, Far Away. Unfortunately, that does not interest them, so Shrek goes on a journey to bring back the next guy, a young Arthur "Artie" Pendragon. Heck, why not? Everyone loves a good Camelot infusion, and Artie is as flawed and as likable as you could want. Unfortunately, he is only one character in a cheesy madhouse of minor characters and cameos. In the effort to get everyone their screen time, that whole plot gets lost in the background.
Which normally wouldn't be a problem. After all, the original movie did not have the most complex of plots. What it had was a few incredible characters. The second movie added a few more, but still kept it delightfully manageable. This time, it seemed that the powers that be assumed we already knew everything about Shrek, Donkey, Puss, and the rest of the bunch that we really didn't need to see them. Hey, let's bring in one more characters for the audience, but refuse to give them time to get to know them! Poor, pathetic lack of character development.
So back to the plot. The few times that came around, it was pretty much a tacky, forced attempt to create some pseudo father/son relationship between Shrek and Artie. Good intentions, but no cigar. Maybe if we had more time... But we don't, so let's just wrap it up with a few corny lines about understanding and rising to the occasion. Yeah, we got that the first time around, and without any of the verbal commentary.
On top of that, this film misses that inexplicable spark of the first two installments. I'm sorry, but I just didn't feel it. Just as a lukewarm attempt of continuing the series and aiming at a five-year old audience.
Sorry. Not my favorite of the series by any means, leaving me to wonder how a sequel to films of such genius as "Shrek" and "Shrek 2" could make something so average?
The movie slogs through a story about Shrek and Fiona having to replace the deceased frog king unless they can find another heir. Shrek's time at the "high school" is so tortured that you can almost smell the coffee the writers had to brew to get through the brainstorming sessions.
Not good, I'm sorry to say. The first two were so clever that this ends up seeming...well...crappy by comparison.
Part of success is knowing when to stop.
I was not too amused with the Disney princesses characters. Shrek's "baby nightmare scene" was well-executed. Justin Timberlake did well in voicing his "grovelling at Merlin's feet" scene. Overall, this movie was not that bad, but it needed to be much better to be worthy to stand on the same level as the first two Shrek films.
Shrek and Fiona have a problem, Fiona's father, the frog King of Far Far Away, has passed away and now it's up to Shrek to take the crown. But Shrek is too scared to step up and looks to the next man in line, well, actually a teenage, Arthur. Shrek, Puss, and Donkey go to find Artie, but there is one more problem going on, Prince Charming wants his kingdom of Far Far Away back like it was promised to him and he will go through anything to get it back. Fionna and the other princesses are kidnapped while Shrek's life is in danger and they must all pull together to save him in time for Arthur to take over the kingdom.
Shrek the Third has great jokes, terrific animation, and lovable characters, especially the character, Merlin, he was just a terrific spoof. But the characters seemed to be lacking the same chemistry as they did in the first two films. I would recommend Shrek the Third, it's a good movie for the family and for a summer movie, because I do guarantee a fun time. I don't know if everyone will agree, but so far I know a few people know that there is something lacking from the world of Shrek.
The Kingdom of Far Far Away is faced with another dilemma: King Harold (John Cleese) has just died and next in line to the throne is Shrek (Mike Myers), who doesn't want to have anything to do with ruling a kingdom. So he goes to search for Artie (Justin Timberlake), Fiona's cousin and the third in line to the throne, in Worcestershire (no kidding), a medieval high school where all students seem to have jumped out of a Hollywood teen flick. Meanwhile, Fiona is pregnant with Shrek as a reluctant father; and Prince Charming teams up with villains from various fairy tales in an effort to take over the kingdom.
While, yes, it's considerably better than "Happily N'Ever After", it's hard to define the movie as anything more than a disappointing mediocrity. It had the chance to be just as good as its predecessor, yet except for a few jokes, it doesn't generate consistent amusement or cleverness when it comes to delivering the laughs. Even with new characters that include Snow White (Amy Poehler), Cinderella (Amy Sedaris), Sleeping Beauty (Cheri Oteri), and Rapunzel (Maya Rudolph) voiced by Saturday Night Live comedians, the film seems to have lost all sense of wit and humor that has made its first two predecessors a fun experience.
As for the material itself, the narrative doesn't seem to have any real motivation or progression. It's merely stretching a premise into an hour-and-a-half end product that merely panders to the filmmakers' whims of extending a lucrative franchise that may be starting to run on fumes. It was easy to ride with these characters in the first film because the animated genre is incredibly trampled with clichés. But a joke can only be said so much before it starts to wear out. Here, directors Chris Miller and Raman Hui fail to give the characters any quality that would evoke sympathy, considering that the story falls flat and perfunctory.
"Shrek the Third" might still appeal to younger audiences, but that's about it as far as recommendations go. Save for sporadic chuckles, the audience I watched it with were quiet throughout the film. It feels hastily assembled and thrown together slapdash, without any attention to what made the first two work, and Dreamworks should get a clue that the ogre is starting to overstay his welcome.
Shrek the third did not continue this trend. While there were sill plenty of funny moments, it was nowhere near as amusing or original as the first two. They could have done so much more with this movie if they had tried. At the end, I felt sort of cheated.
However, Shek the third isn't a bad movie in itself, only when compared to the others. I would still recommend going to see it. Unlike most, I liked Artie's character, even if he did talk too much (I'm not even a Justin Timberlake fan).
The use of music in this film is downright disturbing. I wish they could just have a score for this film. The use of "Live or Let Die" didn't make any sense in a funeral, like another reviewer said. I was almost getting mad about it. It is about killing someone, not about mourning, any idiot would know that.
The use of Immigrant Song is also a problem. It isn't funny the way it is used and it's the point of that song either, neither is the Heart song, Barracuda when the women are fighting. It's a love song, so it makes no sense as a fighting song, maybe Live or Let Die could have gone there instead. Then there's Rock and Roll High School in the high school scene, which is not very funny at all.
I did like Pinocchio and Puss in Boots, but those are because their characters haven't been made overly hip by the writers. All the women characters were made into stereotypes, like Snow White, etc. I did think it was amusing when Sleeping Beauty kept falling asleep, yet in a way that didn't make sense because once she was awakened by her prince, she was up for good.
Then the rest seemed to be fart and vomit jokes. Or jokes that fell flat. Or constant references to things that weren't funny. I guess the music was so us adults could reference them...wow, there's that lame "I've never been to me" song, awesome, I was just thinking about that the other day...oh wait, I wasn't!!! But I think they were trying to do that so the adults would get something out of it and it failed.
Even for free, the movie is a waste of time and if I had kids, I wouldn't want them to watch this. It's really stupid and there are so many better kids' films out there that don't try to be hip and urban to the lack of plot line. There's more to life than pop culture, not to say this movie couldn't have done that a little if there was a plot, I hardly saw any plot...everything just seemed humorless and not having spirit. So the Shrek empire should probably end with this one...I mean, when everyone starts having kids...it's time to jump the Shrek right?
I have to admit, I really wasn't as hyped to see this film than Shrek 2. The trailer was okay, the plot sounds less interesting, and many critics didn't like this film. Yeah, this film is full of energetic characters and some visually dazzling scenes, but it's not as funny, entertaining, or as great as the last two films.
If you've seen the trailer, that's probably all the good jokes that they got in the film. I expected to laugh as much as I did at Shrek 2, since this film is more for the adults than the kids to enjoy. It's a sad fact that more of the jokes comes from secondary characters than the main ones. The action scenes were good, not great, but the story just doesn't interest me.
And the Shrek and Fiona spark isn't as much there as it were in the previous two films. Now here's the good: I liked the secondary characters. They are all funny. This is the most visual Shrek film, having colorful scenes pop out.
This film seems to rely more on the slapstick humor to cover up the weak plot, seemed to not be filled with originality. I didn't mind that. There are some pretty good jokes and some good action scenes. Don't watch this film expecting a great film like the first two, although I wanted this to be a worthy sequel.
When a funeral is held and the song "Live and Let Die" is mined for unavailable laughs, you begin to understand just how bad this is going to be. The creators talked themselves into a dumb pop culture reference without any understanding of the damned song. The song is about revenge: The scene is about revenge about as much as Star Wars is about French Structuralism... so what the hell is it doing here? Hey guys, consider reading a book some time; then when you propose a joke you can know when what you have isn't funny. It's called "having depth." Instead of admiring a writer's cleverness, a viewer sits in the theater envisioning the limp team meeting where that idea was born, accompanied by desperate, wrong-headed titters from weak minds.
Mike Myers should move on and find yet another movie to shoehorn his tiresome Scottish accent into.
For the record the humans in this series have always creeped me out.
I suppose I'd feel different if I were an eight-year-old child, but ...
As far as ideas go, the plot here has Harold, the frog king of Far Far Away (voice of John Cleese), dying (a hilarious segment that recalls Paul Reubens death scene in "Buffy, The Vampire Slayer") and trusting the kingdom to either Shrek (Mike Myers in his Scottish brogue) or the monarch's wimpy nephew, Arthur (Justin Timberlake). Meanwhile, in another bit of inspired comedy, defeated "Prince" Charming (Rupert Everett) is reduced to performing in a cheap dinner theater.
This is basically where the originality ends, however. That does not mean the rest of the picture is bad - it is at least entertaining - but there's not much new any more. If "Shrek The Third" were a person, he'd be yelling at the neighbor kids to get off his lawn and eating supper at the IHOP at 3:30 p.m.
Cases in point: Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) finds out she's pregnant and, like every expectant father in TV sit-com history, Shrek is frightened by his future parental obligations; Charming enlists all of the fairy tale villains in the land to join with him, invade Far Far Away and change the outcome of nursery rhymes (sounds like the plot of the turkey from earlier this year, "Happily N'ever After"); and the captured women of Far Far Away, Fiona, Queen Lillian (Julie Andrews), Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White and Rapunzel (voiced by "SNL" cast members Cheri Oteri, Amy Sedaris, Amy Poehler and Maya Rudolph, respectively) become ninja warriors to try and save the day. Ho hum.
Even the goofy antics of sidekicks Donkey (Eddie Murphy) and Puss-In-Boots (Antonio Banderas), as well as the vocal "talents" of Regis Philbin and Larry King (as the two ugly stepsisters), bring only smiles and smirks instead of side-splitting laughs like in the old days. In fact, the writers are forced to use the word "poop" several times to try and please an increasingly immature and vapid film-going audience.
Only "Monty Python" alum Eric Idle (as an addled Merlin the Magician who switches Donkey and Puss' personalities) is even remotely funny and original among the new characters.
After a battle featuring more windbag philosophy than daring-do, the rightful king is crowned and Fiona goes on to have a litter of baby ogres, who like the Ewoks in "Return of the Jedi" look cute, but add nothing special to the production.
Even the usually-clever closing credits (where the cast sings a classic song) was uninspired and listless this time around.
As usual, the animation of this series is first-rate; unfortunately, the story does not match the technology and those who appreciate the combination will most likely be left feeling a bit empty inside.
In this edition, Shrek's father-in-law, the frog king of the realm of Far Far Away, bequeaths his crown to Shrek on his deathbed unless the reluctant ogre can find a distant heir (the young Arthur) to take his place. Shrek, filled with doubts about his own ability to rule the kingdom, heads off with his faithful companions, Donkey and Puss In Boots, to find the boy and bring him back with them to the castle where he will assume his rightful place on the throne. Meanwhile, the vain, conniving Prince Charming has decided to enlist the aid of all the villains of the kingdom to mount a coup so that he can proclaim himself ruler of the land.
As I reckon them, there are about five hearty laughs in "Shrek the Third," and at least four of them come in the opening scene of the film (a very funny parody of third-rate dinner theater). Unfortunately, it's all pretty much downhill from there, as one ostensibly comic line after another crashes and burns, leaving us with little but the gorgeous backdrops and seamless animation to hold our attention. Regarding the latter point, it must be stated that movie animators have certainly come a long way in perfecting the facial expressions of their characters, but what is the point of such a technological advancement if it is placed in the service of as dismal a script as Andrew Adams, Howard Gould, Jeffrey Price, Peter S. Seaman, J. David Stern, David N. Weiss, and Jon Zack have concocted here? Somehow, you know you're in trouble when no fewer than seven writers have a hand in a screenplay, but couldn't at least one of them have come up with a funny joke or two while they were hammering it all out? Moreover, the story itself is dull and plodding and even the "Shrek" trademark of piling on clever pop culture references falls flat in this instance (and having Medieval teenagers blabbing away in already-dated Valley Girl lingo just doesn't cut it).
Eddie Murphy and Antonio Banderas still provide yeoman service as the voices of Donkey and Puss In Boots, respectively, but even they can't keep the whole enterprise from feeling as if blockbuster rigor mortis has finally set in. Unlike the two earlier films in the series, "Shrek the Third" feels less the product of a magic spell than of a divine curse.
I felt sorry for Shrek the Third. It felt long. The cast seemed like strangers again. Not enough Fiona and Shrek. Not enough Puss in Boots and Donkey. Artie was hard to like. And "Revenge" stories are so single dimensional. When the 'villians/ bad guys' were attacking Far Far Away the movie felt dark.
The biggest disappointment was the music. It sucked - big time! Honestly 'live and let die' at a funeral???? And what is it with singing frogs??? "Flushed Away" and "Meet the Robinsons" had singing frogs...Shrek had to add their own? Overall, my six year old enjoyed repeated watchings of it. I fell asleep. So thanks Dreamworks for finally alienating your paying audience and dumbing down the franchise to kids-only material. One vote off for that. Gone from 4/10 to 3/10.
Mike Myers brings back Shrek for a third run and there's no plot, no story and none of the great little one screen jokes we had with the previous 2 Shrek films.
King Harold is dying (actaully he dies) and Shrek doesn't want to be King so he goes off to look for the next heir to the throne of Far Far Away.
And Prince Charming takes over the kingdom while he's gone.
The rest of the story is Shrek trying to persuade Arthur to be King, trying to face up to the idea he's going to be a father, Their journey back to Far Far Away and the rescue of Fiona and her friends which turns into the rescue of Shrek.
Exceptionally weak plot, the film stumbles from scene to scene and shows no imagination at all.
Extremely BORING and best avoided. This will go straight to DVD.
And that's the problem with this entire movie. The writing is simply not up to par. The story is loaded down with so many different elements that it is impossible to develop any of them. You can almost see the writers thinking, "Okay, now we've got a bunch of stuff for Shrek, Donkey, and Puss to do. Let's put in some stuff for Fiona and Lillian here..." The result is that there's a script, but no real story. And the dialog with some exceptions, is full of the clichés they so happily lampooned in earlier Shreks. The result comes across as a 3rd or 4th draft.
Andrew Adamson directed the previous two Shreks and has one of the writing credits here, but he did not direct it. I guess the franchise is so important now that it must be handled by two directors, neither of whom has Adamson's knack for timing. At various points in the evening, the pace was surprisingly ponderous.
It's not unpleasant, as movies go. It's just disappointing when such an average film continues a series of such good ones.
The writers took an excellent ensemble cast, good timing, a wicked sense of humor and addedwhat? Let's go through it. First they added "meaning"as I leaned over and said to my twelve year old, "it's like the film was high-jacked by a third grade teacher." They added a new, major character (voiced by the genre-challenged Justin Timberlake) that was not only massively unappealing and unfunny, but an opportunity for my imaginary third grade teacher to "teach" us about bullying the little guy, etc. I could understand it if a studio was compelled (say by the equivalent of the federal miles per gallon standards forced onto domestic auto manufacturers) to have a certain amount of Department of Education approved "teaching" in a film, but that wouldn't explain their ambition to "teach us" about fears of parenthood. Who exactly do they like their audience is?
The core issue is Shrek's reluctant to (a) have enough ambition to be king which is mysteriously offered to him over the true heiress, his wife, and (b) additional reluctance to shoulder the ambitions and responsibility of fatherhood. Funny? No. Third grade teacher material? Yes. Well, sort of, but maybe someone speaking to young adults (who will hate this preachy film). But comedy? No, not even close. So how does a studio take millions of dollars, a huge cast including comic talents like Mike Meyers, John Cleese, Eric Idle, and Eddie Murphy. OK, Eddie Murphy isn't that funny when he's in a fat suit, but he does good sidekick.
My first inkling that something was wrong came early when the father-King frog died for a protracted scene. Remind me, what's funny about a guy dying for a long, long, time again? Then there's a whole scene at a medieval high school full of flat, dated "valleyspeak" that the kids have moved on from years ago. How old are these writers? Are they all obsessed with their first pregnancy?
On top of all this they desecrate the already seriously overused Arthurian legend. This unfunny boy, Artie, is supposedly the young King Arthur. Adding insult, they make Merlin into a ineffectual retired hippie complete with Birkenstocks and a drumming circle. What are they trying to say? Isn't it enough to desecrate Disney's own products like making Captain Hook secret ambition to be a flower gardener? All here villains harbor lost ambitions and it takes a very minor confrontation to turn them back into productive citizens.
It all goes on painfully long, unredeemed even by the credits, which were quite funny in Shrek II. It's hard to understand let alone explain a fiasco like this. Was the person in charge humor-impaired? Or perhaps they were not able to lead a huge machine like this, and ended up taking one or two bits from everyone, the whole never adding up. Was there an unfunny heavy boot from the studio? Did the studio want to make less money for some obscure stock-buy back scheme comprehensible only to the inner circle? We will never know. Maybe even the director, writers and cast can't explain it. It's like the fall of Rome. It happened; there are theories, but they are in the end just theories.
There's humor in here for everyone, from simple baby fart jokes to a very well done reference to Paul McCartney's animated short "The Frog Song", and if you're concerned about King Harold (Fiona's frog father) passing away, You don't have to worry, I can guarantee you that you will NEVER find a death scene funnier than his. (Or a funeral scene for that matter.)
The new characters are a wonderful addition to the constantly extending family, Merlin and Artie just to name some.
The Dronkeys from the second film make several appearances and Dragon has much more screen time than she did in Shrek 2, a good thing for me.
And if all of THAT doesn't make you want to see the film, you've got three absolutely adorable Ogre triplets to meet at the end of the film. (Sorry guys, they don't have names yet) These three little bundles of fun steal the scene they are in and are definitely going to be the new favorite characters of any little girl you bring to the film.
For all you teenage girls out there; Artie is REALLY cute.
Merlin will probably be more popular with the adults in your group, considering the fact that most jokes revolving around him are adult centered. (I found him disturbing to be honest)
Highlights include; .Artie going into a full scale, fake crying fit when Merlin refuses to help them save Far Far away. .Puss attempting to do his legendary "sad eye" routine while in Donkey's Body. .Donkey singing the chorus of "Cat's In The Cradle" in order to cheer up Shrek after he worries about being a dad.
And I'm guessing that the scene that will go down in history as the funniest scene in this film is Shrek's Nightmare about being a father, and the reactions that come from it.
The actors once again to a WONDERFUL job with their voicing and Justin Timberlake makes for a nice fresh young addition to the family.
Fiona's Gal Pals, Cinderella, Rapunzel, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty and Doris (From the second film) are also wonderfully done.
IF you enjoyed the first two films, then you will LOVE this one.
Oh, but you MIGHT want to have an answer ready for the inevitable "Where do babies come from?" question if you bring a young child... there's so much talk about babies and preparing for them to come in this film (Donkey serves as an EXCELLENT source for some early on in the film new dad jokes) that they will certainly want to know.
Worst of all...it's just not funny.
Shrek the Third is, well, an hour and a half. That is to say that if you want to spend an hour and a half, this is a great way to do it, but if you want to spend that hour and a half enjoying yourself, or maybe even not enjoying yourself, or hey, feeling ANYTHING, then maybe you should reserve that hour and a half for something that isn't Shrek the Third. Shrek the Third isn't bad, I don't want to say it's really even tedious. Heck, it actually spends the time allotted to it quite concisely. There's no real way to say it, though--this movie provides absolutely no reaction. It wasn't just me: none of the forty some-odd people in the theatre seemed to have much to do either, except maybe the couple in the back, who tried desperately to make their forced laughter seem genuine. Then again, it might be their fault--nothing kills a mood like forced laughter.
Here's the deal: Shrek and Fiona are, you know, dealing with married life and stuff when ol' King Fiona's Father Whatsits decides to croak (get it, croak? He's a frog? Get it? Get it? I should be a Shrek writer). Shrek doesn't want to inherit the kingdom, as his step-father wishes, so he goes off to find Arthur Pendragon, the next-heir-in-line. Meanwhile mean ol' Prince Charming has some designs for taking the kingdom for himself. Also, Shrek is worried about becoming a father. Funny thing is, you know this already, as every single review, synopsis, and advertisement for this movie details this. You probably already know the ending. You probably know the middle. Heck, even if you haven't seen this yet, you know all the gags.
But even that would be slightly acceptable (except knowing the gags) if this movie had any, howdoyousayit, um, "umph" to its jokes. Instead it is lazy and tired. Big bad Shrek just smiles and quietly shrugs off every situation that doesn't involve a spewing baby or a fart joke. Fiona worries around. Donkey, Puss'n'boots, Gingerbread Man, and Pinocchio reference the jokes that they're known for, and run around doing their supporting gags supportingly. In other words, everything that is is, and is what is expected, but isn't enough to really be, if that makes any sense. Believe me, it makes more sense than figuring out why this movie is making as much as it is.
Anyway that's about all I can really muster to mention about something so unmentionable. Normally I'd recommend waiting for rental or discount theatres or something, but to be perfectly honest I can't think of a single reason to go see this movie at all. Oh, wait, yes I can: it features The Eels. Twice! --PolarisDiB
I loved how they brought back Antonio Banderaz as Puss In Boots, and I think he was my favourite in this movie, besides the lovable ogre Shrek. This movie made me laugh and cry in all the right places, at times it was touching and others times it was hilarious. Needless to say, it definitely tickled my funny bone.
The story in this movie is very good, like I said it has it's hilarious moments and some tender ones as well. I'm not going to give away the story, but it was really good. Along with humor it also has villains as well, and even though I thought the movie was really great, i'm going to have to give Shrek 2 my vote.
However, if your a fan of the Shrek series, this isn't one to miss, it's a great movie for the whole family to enjoy.