It’s not often that a sequel is better than the original film. The Godfather, Part 2. Aliens. Toy Story 2. Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo. Ok, not that last one. But now add Shrek 2 to the list. It’s tighter, funnier, and better than the original. The structure is similar to the first one, but now that the characters have already been established, the pace is faster, and the jokes come fast and furious. This is definitely a fun film all around.
The voice casting is, as always, great! We have the same cast from the first film, but now with the delightful addition of John Cleese and Julie Andrews as Princess Fiona’s parents. Antonio Banderas is Puss in Boots (absolutely hysterical), Rupert Everett is Prince Charming, and his mother, the Fairy Godmother, is played by “Absolutely Fabulous” actress Jennifer Saunders with great gusto. The musical numbers are delightful, and I really didn’t stop laughing for the last 20 minutes of the film. Trust me, that’s impressive.
Harry Gregson-Williams returned to score this one solo (sans John Powell), and he does a fine job, using themes established in the first film. It’s hard to hear the score a lot, though, as it seemed to be mixed kinda low. But the arrangements of the songs that he did were awesome, and I hope they end up on the score album, if it ever comes out!
This movie has a lot of humor that will be over most kids’ heads. But that’s fine – this is more for the adults than the kinds, but everyone will get something out of it. The in-jokes are awesome, clever, and the comedic timing and homages are great. This is definitely a summer flick you can’t miss.