Picking up where the first movie left off, Shrek and his new bride Fiona accept an invite to visit her parents, the King and Queen of Far, Far Away. They journey along with the wise-cracking Donkey to what looks like a fairy tale version of Hollywood. Mansions occupied by Cinderella, Rapunzel, and other notables line the streets on the way to the Royal Familys palace. Pulling up in front of the palace to the thunderous cheers of the loyal subjects, they emerge from the carriage in all their green ogre-y glory, much to the mortification of Fionas parents. The initial awkwardness between the two couples never fades and, as you might guess, Shreks first dinner with his in-laws is a complete disaster (the first night under the Kings roof doesnt go any smoother). Seems Shreks rescue of Princess Fiona and their subsequent marriage threw a monkey wrench into the Kings plans to have Fiona wed Prince Charming, the Fairy Godmothers pretty boy son. Enter the slayer of Ogres, the hired gun or in this case, sword who will put the Kings plan back on track, Puss in Boots. Employed by His Royal Highness to do away with Shrek, Puss soon figures out whos the good guy and who deserves a swift kick in the pants from his chic little boots.
Shrek 2 features terrific performances from a talented vocal cast, headlined by returning cast members Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, and Eddie Murphy. Joining the merry troupe for 2 are John Cleese (King Harold), Julie Andrews (Queen Lillian), Rupert Everett (Prince Charming), and Jennifer Saunders (Fairy Godmother), all gifted performers who bring their own unique, larger than life personalities to their computer animated characters. But stealing the show is none other than The Mask of Zorros Antonio Banderas as the Zorro-ish boot wearing feline with the adorable kitty face and razor-sharp claws. Puss introduces himself to Shrek and Donkey by brandishing his little sword and carving his mark on a tree a la Zorro. And though it sounds goofy to call an animated cat dashing, this furry critter has more charm than most real-life two-legged movie characters.
The original Shrek contained many jokes and references that flew over the heads of most viewers under 18 a trait common to animated movies advertised as fit for the entire family. Shrek 2 takes the adult humor a step further with more frequent winks and nods at other well-known movies and celebrities (including Cameron Diaz's boyfriend, Justin Timberlake). Kids will laugh and enjoy the good-natured humor on a surface level, while adults can get quite a few good chuckles from the humor intended for mature filmgoers. Sure there are still the requisite burp and fart jokes, but theres also a lot of charm and wit in this family friendly film.
"Shrek 2" was directed by Kelly Asbury, Andrew Adamson and Conrad Vernon and is rated PG for some crude humor, a brief substance reference and some suggestive content.