Shrek 3, not quite what I thought it would be

Filed under: Toddlers Preschoolers, Teens, Media, That's Entertainment

Over the weekend I packed up my 10 year-old daughter and 2 /12 year-old son into the car and took them to see Shrek the Third. This has been a long anticipated event in our home. Devon, the wee one in our house, has seen both Shrek I and II more times than I care to admit and upon hearing that there was yet more Shrek to be seen he has been jumping up and down everyday to see more. Plus there is the fact that every time we set foot in any sort of store there is Shrek III merchandise everywhere. We can't traverse any aisle without Devon stretching out his chubby hands and yelling out, "I neeeeed Shwek! I neeeeeed F-eye-ona and S-boooooots! I need them, Mai-Mai!" I will confess that these antics have resulted in more Shrek Pez dispensers ending up in our basket than should be.

So after a recent nap, I gathered all of Devon's Pez dispensers into the diaper bag and we went off to the matinee. It was Devon's second trip to a real movie theater and he was more than awed when he saw Shrek and Fiona two stories tall and speaking in stereo. Devon sucked in his breath, hugged his toys close to his small chest and his mouth hung open at the wonder of it all. I, on the other hand, was not as impressed. The movie opens into instant action. The special effects and animation are magnificent. But the story line, an aspect that was so wonderful in both Shrek I and II, is somewhat flat. The story gets better as the movie progresses, but it never hits the same sort of plane that the first two movies established.

Now I could be a bit off here, I am not a movie critic. But I do believe that both Shrek I and II are two of the all time great kids' movies. I put them up on a pedestal with Toy Story and Peter Pan, the original animated version. The first Shrek was original and captivating for audiences of all ages. The second Shrek also excelled in creativity. The third version is still entertaining but lacks the sparkle of the first two.

I will likely end up seeing Shrek III many more times, even owning it when it is released on DVD, so I will have many more opportunities to seek better points about the movie. For my younger children it doesn't matter that this movie is quite on the level of the previous two. My daughter is already anticipating the fourth edition of the series and my youngest awoke this morning asking if we would be returning to see "big Shrek" today.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.