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Movie Review: Shrek Forever After

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Author/Source: Nancy Keith

Topic: Movie Review, Reviews

A review of Shrek Forever After, including description of the movie, areas of concern, teachable themes, discussion questions, and scriptures to use.

Movie Review: <i>Shrek Forever After</i>

Overview

In Shrek Forever After we find Shrek and Fiona settling into family life. Every day blends into the next...feeding the babies...diapering the babies…enjoying the babies as the play..experiencing the babies passing gas...going on play dates with Donkey and his family. It’s a wonderful life....no, literally, It’s a Wonderful Life! Take the Frank Capra favorite and add a DreamWorks spin...you’ve got Shrek Forever After.

Although Shrek loves his family life, he gets tempted by the myth of greener grass when less-than-angelic conman, Stiltskin, shows up with a 24 hour proposition complete with a catch that could permanently blot Shrek off of the landscape of Far Far Away. Shrek discovers an escape clause and spends the rest of the film on a quest to return everything to the way is was...the way it should be.

You would think that a Shrek move would be a kids’ movie. Don’t get me wrong. Kids will laugh and enjoy the characters and their antics...but they will likely miss the whole message of this movie which really is aimed at adults. This is a movie about learning to be content and the importance of family. These concepts are taught by grown-ups and for grown-ups. This is not to say this movie won’t appeal to children...they just won’t get these underlying themes.

Concerns

Flatulence is obviously a problem if you are an ogre. A lot of gas is passed in this movie. There are some big belches and gross diapers. Shrek gets his outhouse knocked over while he is in it. We see Shrek and Fiona in bed and occasionally kissing...but this is not done in a sexual way. Gingie’s pants fall off at one point...but...he’s a gingerbread man!

Shrek does get angry and screams.For a while he becomes a menacing ogre, terrorizing townsfolk.

There is an element of magic to what Stiltskin does. He employs witches to help him in his plots. He is a scheming, conniving menace.

As in the other two Shrek installments, there is plenty of cartoon violence. Characters get smashed with pumpkins, thrown out a window, locked up, whipped and more.

As far as language, at one point Donkey calls himself an ass...which technically could just come down to a matter of semantics.

There are some suggestive images in this film and in this advertising that I guess we are supposed to find really funny. I suppose they are intended to give adults a little laugh while going over the heads of children. Do you ever stop to ask the question- WHY?

Teachable Themes

  • Learn to be Content

  • Whatever situation you find yourself in, learn to be content.

  • Family is a Blessing

  • They may get in your way at times and even on your nerves, but your family is truly a blessing.

  • The Grass is Not Always Greener

  • Sometimes we think if we take ourselves out of a situation that everything will magically turn out right. Greener grass is by and large a myth and its pursuit is often treacherous and destructive.

  • Be Thankful for What You Have

  • A thankful heart will change your whole attitude.

  • Seek Wise Counsel

  • When things are not going right, don’t take matters into your own hand. Seek wise counsel.

Biblical References

  • Learn to be Content

  • Philippians 4:11-13 “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” (NIV)

  • Family is a Blessing

  • Psalm 127:3-5 “ Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one's youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them;They will not be ashamed. When they speak with their enemies in the gate..” (NIV)

  • In Everything Give Thanks

  • 1 Thessalonians 5:18 " Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.” (NIV)

  • Seek God’s Way When Problems Arise

  • Proverbs 14:12 “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.” (NIV)

Discussion Questions

  1. What are the things that you like the most about your family?

  2. What are the things that you like the least about your family?

  3. Have you ever had a time when your family was driving you crazy? What did you do?

  4. Are there things about your life that you would like to change? What? Why?

  5. Why is it always best to find and do God’s way?

Conclusion

I liked this movie. Again, I think the message is lost on kids...it is aimed at adults. The story was heartwarming and had a good message in the end. I definitely think you could pull scenes out of it for use in a parents training.


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