The first "Shrek" movie was a breath of refreshing air that took animated family films into a new stratosphere. Witty and sharp, it worked on multiple levels with kids laughing at one great joke while adults laughed at another. Unfortunately, the first two sequels didn't quite live up to the promise of the original.
But with "Shrek Forever After," DreamWorks has recaptured the snappy heart and cultural satire that started the whole franchise.
This time around, the story has Shrek heading into a midlife crisis. The demands of domestic life with three babies starts to take its toll on Shrek and Fiona. He signs a contract with a fast-talking huckster that promises to give him the experience of being the old ogre he once was.
From this premise many amusing developments and magical mishaps follow. The action is fast-paced with lots of clever side shows to spike the story. Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy and Antonio Banderas return to give a voice to the main characters with comic charm.
Overall, it's a joyous night at the movies for kids of all ages and their parents.