As we follow the ongoing saga of the ogre Shrek (Mike Myers – Shrek, So I Married An Axe Murderer) his father-in-law, King Harold (John Cleese – A Fish Called Wanda, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets), is deathly ill. On his death bed he claims to have finally accepted his son-in-law and wants Shrek to become king of Far Far Away Land when he dies. Being king is the last thing that Shrek wants so he asks King Harold if there are any other heirs. King Harold says there is one and his name is Arthur (Justin Timberlake – Alphadog, Black Snake Moan). After King Harold dies Shrek, Donkey (Eddie Murphy – Beverly Hills Cop, Dreamgirls) and Puss in Boots (Antonio Banderas – Evita, Frida) set off to find Arthur. As they are leaving, Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz – The Mask, The Holiday) lets Shrek know that he is about to be a father, which upsets him as he feels that ogres do not make good parents.
Arthur is not exactly the glamourous hero that Shrek was hoping for and in actuality he is a teenaged boy who is picked on by everyone. Arthur also does not really want the responsibility of being king. It will be a battle of wills getting him back to Far Far Away.
Meanwhile, Prince Charming (Rupert Everett – An Ideal Husband, The Next Best Thing) has gathered every fairy tale villain, Captain Hook (Ian McShane – from television's Deadwood), the Evil Queen (Susan Blakeslee – appeared in episodes of Frazier) from Sleeping Beauty and Cyclops (Mark Valley – from television's Boston Legal), to help him claim the throne of Far Far Away. In doing so his goons trash the whole town and he imprisons Princess Fiona, Queen Lillian (Julie Andrews – The Sound of Music, The Princess Diaries), Doris the ugly stepsister (Larry King), Sleeping Beauty (Cheri Oteri – from television's Saturday Night Live), Snow White (Amy Poehler – Blades of Glory, Mean Girls), Cinderella (Amy Sedaris – Chicken Little, Elf), and Rapunzel (Maya Rudolph – A Prairie Home Companion, 50 First Dates). Only they find out that Rapunzel has betrayed them and led them right into Prince Charming's hands.
On their way back Arthur, Shrek, Donkey, and Puss in Boots are ambushed by a number of the bad guys and after defeating them with some help from Merlin (Eric Idle – Nuns On the Run, The Meaning of Life) they find out that Prince Charming has taken over Far Far Away and has imprisoned Princess Fiona. Shrek and the gang race back to Far Far Away hoping they are not too late to save the day.
The newer generation of animated classics such as Shrek and Finding Nemo are examples of animation at its finest. They are fun to watch and enjoyed by all ages. Despite being the third in the series Shrek the Third demonstrates no signs of slowing down or becoming less entertaining. This one is just as funny and full of pop culture references as the other two. All the actors who provide the voices are excellent and really add to the personalities of the animated characters. With my two favourite characters being The Gingerbread Man and Puss in Boots. Like most animated films there is a positive lesson in it for the young and the not so young. The major theme or lesson in this film is to accept yourself no matter what other people say or think of you.
What some critics will say is that the jokes and the story are getting a little old with this franchise, but I beg to differ. I laughed just as much and still found myself marveling at the animation. Yes, I agree there is nothing new or earth shattering in the story, but show me one animated feature that has a completely original screenplay. It rarely happens. We should just go to films with the view to enjoying them and not trying to pick them apart and look for every little flaw. Have a good time at the movies!
-Shrek's Guide to Parenthood
-The Fauxly Grail
-The Animator's Corner: Picture-in-Picture Interactive Storyboards
-The World of Shrek
-My Menus: Customizable Character Menus
-Tech of Shrek
-Big Green Goofs
-Merlin's Magic Crystal Ball
-How to Be Green
-Shrek's Trivia Track