December 3, 2010

Shrek Forever After - 2010

Director: Mike Mitchell
Writers: Josh Klausner & Darren Lemke
Starring: Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, Antonio Banderas, Walt Dohrn

In the final chapter of the Shrek tetralogy, Shrek (Myers) has become dissatisfied with the monotony of his life with Fiona (Diaz) and their three children. After one particularly bad day, he makes a deal with Rumplestiltskin (Dohrn) to get a day to "live like a real ogre" again, in exchange for the erasure of a day from his childhood that he won't remember. Rumplestiltskin being the trickster that he is, the childhood day is the day Shrek was born, launching the characters from the series into a dystopian alternate universe where Rumplestiltskin is king and Fiona, still under the curse, leads a band of rogue warrior ogres against his tyranny.

I'm almost willing to put aside the fact that this is merely a Shrekified version of It's a Wonderful Life. Unfortunately, the series is now a bitter shell of what it once was. Klausner and Lemke's attempt to literally rewrite the beloved film from nearly a decade ago falls short of even the third entry in the series, making the same things that were once entertaining and amusing now painfully annoying at times. In addition, there's a star-studded cast of minor characters that (aside from the ogre played by Mad Men's Jon Hamm) are lucky to get three lines each over the course of the film. What a waste! Unless you're a die hard fan, you'll agree that "the final chapter" had come and gone before this one went into production. D

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