Shrek the Third

Rated 2.0

That Scottish-accented ogre (voice by Mike Myers) inherits the kingdom when his royal father-in-law dies, but doesn’t welcome the job—or his impending parenthood. The new Shrek movie is short on story and long on dumb jokes, but at least it’s stunningly animated (odd that the animation should grow ever more textured and subtle while the humor grows ever less so). Comedy like this worked better in the days of six-minute cartoons; at feature length it grows strained and monotonous. In the long run, it’s a toss-up as to what is more annoying: the parade of lame jokes, the perfunctory homilies about self-esteem and responsibility or the nagging suspicion that directors Chris Miller and Raman Hui decided their movie didn’t have to be good—that a box-office bonanza would be in the bag no matter what.