Shrek the Third

Rated 2.0

Shrek the Third All the characters in this third entry are back in their places, as Prince Charming sets about staging a cartoon d’état in the land of Far, Far Away. Meanwhile, King Harold (John Cleese) has croaked, and Shrek (Mike Meyers) finds himself the new heir apparent and wants nothing to do with it, so he sets off to track down kid Arthur and zany hippie magician Merlin to fill in for him. Things happen and recycled jokes fall flat, but the toddlers will eat them up. While I didn’t hate it, I still found it kind of depressing … not because I was expecting more, but because there was really nothing there. All those animators putting in the hours frame by frame (or pixel by pixel) with nothing to hang it on insofar as a story or gags. Admittedly, the animators are the stars of the show here, as some unexpectedly loving detail is put into their work. Too bad they didn’t hire writers to match that level of professionalism. The script just sort of meanders around using other pop movie moments to build a patchwork quilt of a narrative, as if the writers for Epic Movie had somehow snuck in and replaced the proper script. Overall? Didn’t laugh. Not even once. —