Shrek the Third (2007)
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Featurette-Yearbook, Donkey Dance, Meet The Cast, Tech of Shrek +
DVD-ROM Extras-Games, Printables, weblinks
|Year Of Production||2007|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (57:33)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||
Paramount Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||Miscellaneous|
English for the Hearing Impaired
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||Yes|
Shrek and Shrek 2 were two of the biggest box office hits in movie history, currently sitting at number 58 and number nine respectively, on the "biggest worldwide box office takes ever" list. Inevitably, there was going to be a Shrek the Third. After watching it, however, my first thought is 'Should there really have been??' or 'If there was, couldn't it have been at least somewhere near the quality of the first two?'. Unfortunately, the inspiration left this series after the second film, despite the main voice cast returning and there being some good moments in this film. The problem is that too much of the fairly short running time moves quite slowly, the plot strands (with the exception of the Shrek becomes a daddy plot) are quite uninteresting and most of the new characters are boring (Justin Timberlake, I'm talking to you).
The story this time involves the king of Far, Far Away being sick and so Shrek and Fiona stand in for him. Fiona is pregnant with Shrek's baby. On his death bed, the king asks Shrek to succeed him but Shrek does not want the responsibility. Accordingly, he sets out to find another heir for the throne, Fiona's cousin, Arthur Pendragon (Timberlake). Prince Charming meanwhile is living with a wide variety of fairy tale baddies and starring in dinner theatre. He sets in motion a scheme to take over the kingdom while Shrek is searching for Arthur. Donkey & Puss-in-Boots are still around to keep Shrek company but have very little in the way of plot associated with them.
On the positive side, Donkey & Puss are certainly still fun and there are some good laughs from them and also from Merlin (Eric Idle) who has had a little breakdown and retired to the country. Unfortunately, this is outweighed by a slow pace, an uninteresting plot and a general reduction in the level of fun. The worst thing of all though is the Worcestershire Academy which is basically an American high school transported to England in the Middle Ages. It is an enormously bad idea which is completely and utterly unfunny, certainly to Australian audiences. This 'idea' also 'inspired' what I think is probably the worst extra I have ever reviewed (see below). Something else which disappointed me about this third film is that the music choices were nowhere near as good as the first two films with the possible exception of the use of Led Zeppelin.
As you would expect, the quality of the animation is awesome and a big step up from the previous film (as it was from the first). It is such a shame that some of the time and money invested into the technology was not directed to getting a better script. Worth a look for fans of the series, however, it is hard to recommend as a freestanding film.
The video quality is excellent.
The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio, 16x9 enhanced, which is the original aspect ratio.
The picture was wonderfully clear and sharp throughout, with no evidence of low level noise or grain of any description. The shadow detail was excellent.
The colour was fantastic with incredible richness and depth of colour. There were no colour blemishes of any kind.
The only artefact I noticed was some very occasional jagged edges.
There are subtitles in English & English for the Hearing Impaired. They are a little small and have some changes from the spoken word.
The layer change occurs at 57:33 and is not noticeable.
The audio quality is very good.
This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 Kb/s. Overall, the soundtrack was a little quieter than other discs but once turned up was of very good quality.
Dialogue was very clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.
The score of this film was somewhat of a disappointment compared to the first two films. The best song was in the final credits.
The surround speakers were certainly well used with various storms, animals and other directional effects.
The subwoofer was also well used adding bass to storms and other thumping noises.
|Surround Channel Use|
A real mixed bag, big on quantity, very mixed on quality. The DVD-ROM extras are the highlight.
The menu design is a little boring but does include music and motion.
Certainly a candidate for worst extra in the history of DVD. There is a short scene in the film (as mentioned above) that features an American high school transplanted to England in the Middle Ages. In that scene lots of different students at the school are shown on screen, few if any of them are introduced or have lines. This extra features every single one of them, with a separate page from their high school yearbook which features their interests, clubs they are in and other completely useless information along with them telling us about it. Dear, oh Dear!
A short collection of animation stuff-ups. Average. 16x9 enhanced.
Three sequences which were removed from the film BEFORE animation was done. They are presented as a walkthrough of storyboards, with a split screen. There are three sections which show, the storyboard, the presented and the audience watching him.
A highlight which is Donkey doing a short, relatively amusing dance.
Featurette about the voiceover cast featuring both original cast members and new ones such as Eric Idle and Cheri Oteri. Fairly self-congratulatory.
Five parenting suggestions each from Donkey, Puss-in-Boots, Pinocchio and Gingy. Boring.
A fairly interesting featurette about how the animation effects were done including hair, water, clothes and fire. Lots of ads for the computer companies involved.
Song-based excepts from six Dreamworks movies. These are advertisements for the DVDs, basically. Shrek, Shrek 2, Shark Tale, Madagascar, Over The Hedge, Flushed Away.
Collection of trailers.
You think of a yes or no questions and Merlin answers it.
Preachy environmental message.
Instructions on how to do the dance featured elsewhere on the disc.
Clicking on this plays the two Shrek segments from the Jukebox.
Put the disc into you DVD-ROM drive to access these. This section is the pick of the extras. Works in PC or Mac.
Interactive tool which allows you to combine graphics, music, clips and effects together in funny ways.
A good selection of games is included such as Eyeball dropper, Captain Shrek (a sailing race), Gingy's Dreamz (a race through Gingy's dreams), Long Leap the King (Frog jumping on lily pads - bit like Frogger) and Tickle Fight (Puss vs. Pinocchio).
This section includes colouring in pages, various activities, magic ricks, Yoga instructions, party games and Green activities.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on;
The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on;
On this basis lets just call it a draw. This film is also available on HD DVD.
The video quality is excellent.
The audio quality is very good.
A real mixed bag of extras, big on quantity, very mixed on quality.
|DVD||Pioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output|
|Display||Sony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Monitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Yamaha YST SW90 subwoofer|