Shrek review by Dave Richards
With tube-like antenna things for ears and skin color that resembles the ooze from Ghostbusters, he doesn't exactly have a lot going for him.
But don't tell that to the motor-mouth donkey, or the beautiful princess. They seem to like him just the way he is.
Shrek is a film filled with tantalizing computer animation that pays attention to the most minute details, but its real treasures revolve around its characters and its complex storyline. It's hard to find a picture that aims to appeal to both adults and children, but this one does.
When we first meet Shrek, we realize he's a pretty smart character. He'll use his size and intimidating looks to scare people away from his home if he has to. He's a good ogre, but one who simply wants to live in peace and harmony. However, when Shrek gets invaded by a slew of characters from fairy-tale land, he can't take it anymore.
The fairy-tale creatures, which include the three blind mice and the big bad wolf, have come to Shrek because they have been kicked out of their kingdom by the villain Lord Farquaad (John Lithgow). Shrek (Mike Myers) comes face to face with Farquaad and together they figure out a deal.
Shrek agrees to fetch Farquaad the bride of his dreams, Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz), in exchange for sending the little fairy-tale guests back to their original kingdom.
As the film continues, Shrek begins to embark on his journey, but he doesn't go alone. Along the way he meets up with an annoying, but faithful donkey (Eddie Murphy), who seems to have a sarcastic comment for everything. Together, the two go after the princess, who's kept under close watch by a towering dragon.
Shrek works so well because it cares about its characters _ even the donkey has feelings.
This isn't one of those typical animated movies where we meet the hero, the villain screws things up, the hero meets the princess and they live happily ever after. Those films play as if they were on autopilot.
Shrek's main journey revolves not around falling in love with the princess as much as it is simply trying to live in peace and quiet.
More things happen on Shrek's quest, but that's the beauty of the film. It manages to surprise us time and time again.
There's more to all of the main characters in Shrek than meets the eye.
I can't think of the last time an animated film was able to accomplish that.