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Shrek the Third


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Link to the thread on Shrek 2.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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  • 5 months later...

You know how we critics have to deal with embargoes, where if we see a movie early, we agree not to publish anything on it until opening day?

Yesterday I got an e-mail notifying me that a DVD with the trailer for Shrek the Third had been ACCIDENTALLY sent to me early ... so it would be arriving soon ... but I should not write anything about it until this Friday.

Embargoes on trailers now! What will they think of next. (And didn't I hear recently that the new trailer was already online somewhere?)

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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I like how they seem to be following the naming template for Blackadder.

Otherwise... I got nuthin'.

Kent Brockman: Now, here are the results from our phone-in poll. 95% of the people think Homer Simpson is guilty. Of course, this is just a television poll, which is not legally binding. Unless Proposition 304 passes, and we all pray it will.

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  • 3 months later...

Shrek on a diet in McDonald's Happy Meal gig

McDonald's Corp. is putting the pot-bellied green star of "Shrek" movies on a diet in a new campaign that features the restaurant chain's apple slices and salads rather than its burgers and fries.

Reuters, May 8

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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I just realized this is opening quite soon.

However, I am unenthused. Shrek 2 had all of the first movie's crudeness, but none of its charm, wit, or energy. I can't imagine the third installment being much of an improvement; judging by the trailers, which are mostly just loosely-connected comedic bits, there doesn't seem to be much of a plot.

Edited by Jeff

-"I... drink... your... milkshake! I drink it up!"

Daniel Plainview, There Will Be Blood

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This is a strange month for blockbusters. THREE movies are coming out, all of which are the THIRD installments in their respective franchises, all of which (the franchises, that is) have at least ONE movie that grossed over $400 million. Last week there was Spider-Man 3, next week there is Shrek the Third, and the week after that is Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. Have we ever seen so many mega-franchises open at the same time before? Is it possible that all three of them will continue to be as popular now as their predecessors were?

Interestingly, with regard to the Spider-Man franchise, it was the FIRST movie that made over $400 million, but most people agree the SECOND movie was better; whereas with the Shrek and Pirates movies, it was the SECOND movie that made over $400 million, but the consensus seems to be that the FIRST movies were better. (See footnote below.) So what's the lesson here -- that the worse movie always makes more money?

Footnote: Where do I glean these "consensuses"? RottenTomatoes / Cream of the Crop / Metacritic say:

  • Shrek (2001; $267.7 million) -- 89/84/84
  • Shrek 2 (2004; $441.2 million) -- 88/92/75
  • Spider-Man (2002; $403.7 million) -- 90/84/73
  • Spider-Man 2 (2004; $373.6 million) -- 93/95/83
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl (2003; $305.4 million) -- 79/65/64
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006; $423.3 million) -- 54/42/53
Curiously, RT's "cream of the crop" actually thinks Shrek 2 was better than the first film, but RT as a whole and Metacritic both agree the franchise dipped at least a bit.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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I just realized this is opening quite soon.

However, I am unenthused. Shrek 2 had all of the first movie's crudeness, but none of its charm, wit, or energy. I can't imagine the third installment being much of an improvement; judging by the trailers, which are mostly just loosely-connected comedic bits, there doesn't seem to be much of a plot.

My thoughts are pretty much the same. I had to be dragged to the second one, since I thought the original Shrek needed a sequel like a new Cadillac needs a neon paint job. When I did see it, it didn't quite live down to my expectations, but I still felt that it was unnecessary and commercial.

That's just how eye roll.

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I haven't seen either of the first two Shreks since they were pretty much new -- but FWIW, I remember liking the second one better, if only because it had Puss'n'Boots and a climax so over-the-top (what with the disco tune, the giant Gingerbread Man, etc.) that I was momentarily "transported" in a way that I don't remember happening during the first film.

Oh, how I wish there were no embargoes on this third installment. It sucks not being the Associated Press or one of the "trade papers".

But it occurs to me that, between Shrek the Third and Knocked Up, there will be at least two films in the next few weeks about big fat slobs who suddenly discover that they are about to become fathers. If only there were a third such film on the immediate horizon, we'd have a "theme piece" going here.

More later.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Well, the reviews are popping up everywhere today -- even at CT Movies -- so I guess the embargo has been lifted. I haven't read any of those reviews yet, but here are the first couple of comments that came to mind after last night's screening:

The film is reasonably amusing, diverting, etc., but never as "transporting" as the previous installments (especially the 2nd film). In fact, a few of the jokes are repeats of gags from previous films.

One of the things that made the 2nd film even better than the 1st film -- or at least an indispensible extension of the franchise, kind of like how it is impossible to think of Star Wars without thinking of all the ways The Empire Strikes Back took the ball and ran with it -- was the new characters it introduced, notably Puss in Boots but also the Fairy Godmother. The 3rd film, OTOH, doesn't really introduce any memorable new characters. Justin Timberlake as Arthur and especially Eric Idle as Merlin are both kind of dull and forgettable, and I'd be surprised if they hung around for Shrek 4 (at least to the degree that Puss in Boots has hung around for Shrek 3).

Shrek 3 does introduce one new development that future sequels would have to pick up: namely, Fiona's pregnancy and Shrek's impending fatherhood. But after introducing this theme in the first act, the film does very little with it, at least until the closing reel. My wife and I laughed at all the new-parent gags, because they certainly rang true, but I think there were fewer of them than there should have been.

Finally, the use of music is iffier here than it was in previous installments. I laughed when I first recognized a certain Paul McCartney tune, and then I waited to see what the film would do with it... and then the movie DIDN'T really do anything with it. It was one of a few moments in the film that felt pretty flat.

Like I say, though, there are some fun, amusing bits. But if I had a choice between seeing this in the theatre again and staying home and watching Shrek 2 on DVD again...

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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  • 3 weeks later...

2 was definitely my favorite. Saw three last week and thought it fell flat on its face. As Peter mentioned, there was nothing new, and certainly nothing memorable.

I thought 2 did a fantastic job at using wit. . . I only recall laughing once in the third film, which disappointed me. I figured even if the story was going down the drain, it would at least have some great moments. Sadly, they were few and far between.

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