Can you believe it? Fifteen years ago we were introduced to the biggest, grumpiest and most loyal green ogre in the world! DreamWorks Animation and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment let us relive the magic with the release of “Shrek” on Bluray and the “Shrek” 4-Movie Collection on Bluray and Digital HD.
Shrek (Mike Meyers) is an ogre living deep in the woods. Happy with his bog showers and grub worm candle light dinners, life can’t get any better! That is until an edict by Lord Farquaad (John Lithgow) brings fairytale creatures running for cover from the guards. Cover means encroaching on Shrek’s ogre like tranquility.
Then there is Donkey (Eddie Murphy), a singing, wise-racking, softie who sees the benefits of having an ogre for a friend and decides the swamp looks like a great place to call home.
Frustrated by the intrusion of the fairytale creatures, especially Donkey, Shrek decides it’s time to visit Lord Farquaad and get things straight. The pint-sized Lord is in the market for a bride and has his heart set on Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz). There is a slight problem; Princess Fiona is trapped in a castle guarded by a very large and dangerous dragon.
A deal is struck — if Shrek can deliver Princess Fiona to Lord Farquaad then the swamp will be put back to right. Happy to oblige Shrek heads out to rescue the Princess with Donkey in tow. What this ogre doesn’t expect is to kind of like the Princess. She is smart, funny, caring and has a few moves that impress him, but she also has a secret.
Getting close to his swamp goal, Shrek isn’t so sure that is what he truly wants but isn’t sure how to change it.
Meyers as Shrek is absolutely delightful. He began in 2001 and continued to delight in other “Shrek” films. We all know the voice and have embraced the big green guy and that’s all due to Meyers’ ability to make us love a fairy tale character that many of us grew up believing couldn’t be loveable. Thanks Mike for that!
Murphy as Donkey is hilarious from beginning to end. Yes, he is sweet, cuddly, charming, not-so-bright at times but is a dedicated and loyal friend who also has a lovely singing voice. Donkey just looks to be loved and accepted by Shrek and although it is testy at times, Shrek can’t help but love him too.
Diaz as Fiona doesn’t take any guff just because she’s a Princess — and a girl! Of course she initially had dreams of finding her Prince who would give her true loves kiss and sweep her off her feet but let’s be honest — she wouldn’t have been happy with that. Her true colors come out and its fun!
Lithgow as Farquaad is short tempered and just plain mean. Yes there is something about this character, oh yes, it’s Lithgow’s delivery of a line! It is shamefully fun (okay maybe not that shameful) and the first time he got off his horse I think I might have shot soda out my nose laughing.
Other characters include: Chris Miller as Gepetto and Magic Mirror, Cody Cameron as Pinocchio and the Three Pigs, Michael Galasso as Peter Pan, Christopher Knights as Thelonious.
TUBS OF POPCORN: Of course I give “Shrek” five tubs of popcorn out of five. This is a film I have watched over and over again and now am sharing it with my granddaughter who thinks Donkey is hilarious (yes, we’re obviously related!). DreamWorks started a franchise with amazing animation that is flawless.
“Shrek” appeared in 2001 followed by the continuing story in “Shrek 2” in 2004. “Shrek the Third” hit theaters in 2007 and “Shrek Forever After” in 2010. People couldn’t get enough of the gang so there was “Shrek the Halls” in 2007 for television and “Shrek the Musical” in 2013. Believe it or not there are also videos games!
In “Shrek 2” the couple comes to the King (John Cleese) and Queens (Julie Andrews) for dinner with a few surprises. Prince Charming (Rupert Everett) is hatching a plot to win Fiona. His mother the Fairy Godmother (Jennifer Saunders) knows bad is the only way to be about the whole thing.
When the King falls ill in “Shrek the Third,” the couple has to give up the swamp to take over the kingdom. He isn’t happy and tries to find a way to make a young man named Artie (Justin Timberlake) the chosen one.
Now, with a family to think about in “Shrek Forever After,” the ogre wonders if things could have been different. Enter Rumplestilskin who takes advantage of Shrek creating an alternate universe that isn’t exactly how the big green one thought it could all turn out. Careful what you wish for Shrek!
The “Shrek” Bluray includes Shrek, Rattle & Roll Music, Filmmakers Commentary, Deleted Scenes, Shrek’s Interactive Journey, The Animators’ Corner, Karaoke Dance Party, Secrets of Shrek, Spotlight on Donkey and more.
Now, 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment has brought all four original films into a 4-film Bluray combo pack. That means you can see Shrek, Fiona, Donkey and Puss n’ Boots (Antonio Banderas) along with the entire Far, Far Away family any time the family wants to pull a pizza marathon.
In the end — it’s the greatest fairy tale never told till now!