Several years ago, Mike Myers' Shrek essentially put Dreamworks Animation on the map as a heavy contender against the monstrous Pixar. The movie was more a spoof of modern events than some wonderfully animated, flowing family-comedy-drama, but it had more than enough laughs to make a box office killing. Shrek 2 was even better, taking what worked in the first one and improving at every turn. With Shrek the Third, it is clear the writers ran out of ideas.
Shrek the Third features our green star on the hunt for a young boy named Arthur, who is a potential successor to the crown. After his father-in-law dies, Shrek finds himself in charge of a kingdom he doesn't want, and, with a baby ogre on the way, he definitely sees his life getting a lot more complicated. And with Prince Charming recruiting the villains of the kingdom to overthrow the throne, things are about to go from bad to worse.
Shrek 3 lacks everything the previous two movies had: charm, wit and interesting characters. Somehow, the screenwriters managed to lose focus on every entertaining character that the Shrek franchise has to offer and instead decided to write a story about the least intriguing characters one could imagine. Why do a story where Shrek is in it for only a short amount of time, where the best supporting characters like Pinocchio, Puss in Boots and Donkey are rarely used and where bland humans like the future King Arthur (who likes to go on with inspiring speeches), Prince Charming (who has been sucked of material over the last two movies) and a bunch of damsels get most of the action? Of course, some of the blame has to fall on Dreamworks and Paramount, as for some reason they couldn't hire back the same screenwriters that proved to be so successful in past iterations.
There are some funny parts in Shrek the Third, but the best parts are shown in the previews. I've seen worse cartoons, but really, Shrek the Third is not that good at all. The plot sucks and the movie pales in comparison to better movies in the franchise. Go watch Shrek 2 instead.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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