The Source for Youth Ministry

Movie Reviews
by Jonathan McKee

Shrek 2 (11/2/2004)

Rated PG (For some crude humor, a brief substance reference and some suggestive content)

Directed by Andrew Adamson, Kelly Asbury, and Conrad Vernon

Starring the voices of Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy

Jonathan's Rating: Theatre Worthy

Shrek and Fiona are back, Donkey too. And the pressure to “deliver” is on, as most sequels fall short. Does Shrek 2 deliver? Does it live up to the reputation of the first film?

Audiences seem to think so. . . and so do the deep pockets of Dreamworks. In 2001 the first Shrek brought in over 42 million dollars on opening weekend, eventually grossing over 267 million. Shrek 2 brought in 108 million on opening weekend eventually grossing over 436 million dollars.

Shrek 2 brings us new characters, new adventures and . . . mostly new jokes. They couldn’t resist re-visiting the typical Michael Myers humor: farting, the double meaning of the word “ass,” and other crude humor and suggestive content.

The story is simple: Princess Fiona’s parents invite Shrek and Fiona for dinner, but her parents don’t expect two ogres. To make matters worse, Fiona’s fairy godmother has hidden plans for Fiona to marry her own son, Prince Charming. Shrek gets jealous, Fiona gets deceived, Donkey gets a make-over and the fun begins. Not to mention the hit new character, the notorious hit-man “Puss In Boots”(by far the favorite character of most audiences).

Shrek 2 is indeed creative. The story was original and the characters always bring laughs. The only dilemma is the stigma of the modern animated film. Back in the day, animation meant, “clean.” If the film was animated, you could pretty much count on the film being acceptable to kids. I know that some will disagree. Sure, snow white had an evil character that wanted to cut out her heart and put it in a box. Okay, given. But I didn’t see a lot of kids walking around wanting to cut people’s hearts out. Modern animation seems to contain more crude humor and imitative behavior. Guaranteed, kids walking out of the original Shrek were giggling and quoting his “I’m going to save my ass!” line.

Today, as parents, we need to be a little more prudent about screening the movies marketed to our kids. All of us can probably share stories about where we were burned by a movie that we “thought” was going to be a great kids film, but turned out to be quite the opposite. (Barbequed "Shark Tale" anyone?)

It’s your call--reread the above two paragraphs. And in Shrek 2 they refer to Shrek’s “sexy tush,” they re-visit the old “ass” joke with donkey, and they joke about Pinocchio wearing ladies underwear and then give him a wedgy, exposing that he is indeed wearing a ladies thong.

Conversation Starter
Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):

  1. What are some of the messages or themes you observed in this movie?

  2. How do you suppose we—as serious Christ-followers—should react to this movie?

  3. How can we move from healthy, Bible-based opinions about this movie to actually living out those opinions?

Jonathan McKee Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices, If I Had a Parenting Do Over, 52 Ways to Connect with Your Smartphone Obsessed Kid; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He has over 20 years youth ministry experience and speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers and parents on his websites, and You can follow Jonathan on his blog, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.

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