29 October 2007 | Denden667
Shrek 3, a pleasant surprise after all the hideous hype.
I have just been pleasantly surprised by Shrek 3. Trying to ignore all the hype around it, I tried to watch it (on DVD) as the second sequel to one of my favourite films, nothing more. Although it comes nowhere near the quality of the first film, it does try to recreate its pleasant pacing and isn't overstuffed with easy film/commercial/real life-reference jokes (I'm looking at you, Shrek 2). And if one pops up, than it got more laughs out of me than Far Far Away ever did in Shrek 2. The Medieval high School was just hilarious, especially the mix-up between today's teen slang and Middle English. As an English student, it really appealed to me.
I really liked the dialogue between the characters like in Shrek 1, it's something I kind of missed in Shrek 2, where the characters just jumped from one crazy situation to the next with a few one-liners her and there. What I did miss, was the bickering between Puss and Donkey. Both characters do in fact get way too little screen time, and that's a big mistake since both characters were the highlights of Shrek 2. Somewhere near the end they do get in a situation that brings back some of the comedy gold of Shrek 2, but it's too little and too late.
All the old characters get to do something funny, but in the end they are all just great to see as old friends you know from the past. It's nice to see Donkey, Puss and Shrek get along so well with each other, but there's nothing more they can do to fill another film. We know the characters, and they have all found a place in the world they live in. I have gotten all I wanted out of the overall storyline, I'm happy with the way things are for the characters now, and I don't mind that the third journey had to replace the "insert joke every few seconds"-mentality of Shrek 2 with a bit more storytelling. There were still plenty of big laughs left, I can tell you.
Ultimately, Shrek 2 was funnier, but I think I like Shrek 3 better. I felt that this adventure was more meaningful for all the characters, and I know that this is the part where a lot of critics thought it wasn't necessary. But if you ask me, Shrek 3 was unnecessary. But since they really had to make a Shrek 3, I think they did well to make the adventure a bit more meaningful and make it really count in the end. It's only too bad that the message is the same of the previous two films, we get it already.
The only thing I really didn't like was one of the major characters they used to tell us again that you must accept yourself and others as they are. Artie was a really un-Shrek character. His speeches were dull and Justin Timberlake does nothing to make the character more likable. Of course, he has little to work with. I liked Justin timberlake's part better as a poster in Shrek 2 with the text "Sir Justin". It was funnier than anything Artie said or did in Shrek 3. Let Shrek, Donkey or Puss do the talking, dude.
As far as I'm concerned, Shrek 3 was an unnecessary sequel that still worked for me with some good humour and the characters being as charming as ever. The story was more meaningful for the main characters. The end of this adventure, even though repeating the message of the previous films, provided me with satisfying closure on the story of the happy Shrek family. Too bad that another unnecessary sequel is coming, undoubtedly with even more hype and more dull characters like Artie. Sadly, the Shrek franchise seems to be the most inspired thing coming from Dreamworks Animations.