Monday, June 9, 2008


Yesterday, Shrek the Third came on one of the movie channels and I decided to watch it through. I had already seen it, of course, but the Shrek movies are definitely films you can watch repeatedly. As the movie ended, and there was still a lot of Sunday remaining, I decided to grab my copy of the original Shrek, a movie I had not seen in quite awhile.

For those who haven't seen the film in awhile (or for those who have never seen it at all), i recommend throwing in a copy. I remembered most of the premise for the film, but a lot of the jokes and other various things I had forgotten.

The original Shrek plays out like this. An ogre (Mike Myers), who enjoys his time alone, is greeted by a talking donkey (Eddie Murphy). Donkey believes that he and Shrek are best of friends, so he follows him home - but he must stay outside.

Lord Farquaad (John Lithgow), meanwhile, has extradited all fairy-tale creatures and has dumped them in Shrek's swamp. So the journey begins to remove the creatures from his swamp - he must confront Farquaad.

After besting all of the Lord's men, Farquaad decides to give Shrek his swamp back - if, of course, he is able to rescue Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) from a dragon-guarded castle. Shrek accepts, and along with donkey, sets off on his journey to rescue the princess.

The dragon that is guarding the princess turns out to be female, and very much in love with donkey. So Shrek is able to rescue the princess a little easier than he thought, but it was rescuing donkey that proved to be the toughest.

The trek from the dragon's castle to Du Loc is the funniest parts of the movie for me. The back-and-forth between Shrek, Donkey and Fiona is pretty priceless - Donkey and Shrek most notably.

Along the way we learn that Fiona is harboring a secret - that she was 'cursed' by a witch when she was younger, and whenever the sun goes down she turns into an ogre. Donkey discovers this, and finds out that Fiona has feelings for Shrek. Shrek overhears parts of the conversation, believing that Fiona could never love him - an ugly ogre - he leaves to bring Farquaad to her.

His feelings hurt, Shrek again tries to seclude himself from everyone - banishing Donkey from his swamp. But, Donkey returns as he feels he earned half of the bounty for helping rescue the princess. It's then that Donkey reveals that Fiona has feelings for Shrek - so they set out to stop the wedding.

Despite arriving too late, Shrek professes his feelings for Fiona and vice-versa - then showing her 'curse' to everyone in attendance. Of course, Shrek believes she is beautiful, and they share 'true loves first kiss' and get married. Living Happily Ever After.

The original is what sets the tone for the two sequels, and the other films that are in production for release. Shrek proves to be a character who is misunderstood, and only truly loves being alone because he has been told all of his life that he is ugly, and people run from him. Donkey, despite being overly talkative and annoying to people, proves he has a big heart and wants what is best for his friends. And Fiona learns that beauty is only skin-deep, choosing to live her life as an ogre to be with her true love.

I enjoyed the introduction of all of these characters. The secondary characters are very interesting as well, and it's fun to try and pick out the different fairy-tale character that you can find. My one complaint is the death of Lord Farquaad (eaten by the dragon) because I liked the character (as well as Lithgow doing the character) and felt he could have been used in later films.

It was nice to take a look back at the film that has inspired a pair of already released sequels, and more to come.

Note: Weird coincidence, but as I was finishing this posting - Smash Mouth's I'm a Believer (the theme from Shrek) came on the radio in the office next to mine.


  1. If Farquaad didn't die, then Shrek & Fiona couldn't have been married. Also, if Fiona was technically a widow, why didn't she get that kingdom??

  2. That's a good question. Perhaps because the marriage was never consummated, not even by a kiss, then the marriage technically didn't exist.

    Also, it may just be that Shrek didn't want a kingdom. He seems perfectly happy in his swamp - and in the later movies, is very reluctant to be a leader of a castle.

    Perhaps it could be explained in a Shrek 1 1/2, haha.