Movie Review 2007 #169-170: Shrek the Third and Meet the Robinsons

Although I don’t normally review movies I catch at the Olsons, I thought these two movies presented an irresistible contrast.

Shrek the Third is the weakest, IMO, of the Shrek Franchise.
The first movie was a very amusing skewering of fairy tales and disney movies, complete with a red haired “Princess Fiona”. The second movie is a bit weaker, but still a lot of fun. I own both, and both have decent soundtracks, too.
In the third movie, however, the franchise runs out of gas. There are some amusing bits here and there, but its overwhelmed by a lackluster soundtrack, a lack of cohesion in the plot, and logical flaws that are too glaring to be ignored. (eg: If Shrek is married to Fiona, why is he the heir to Fiona’s father?). And some parts of the movie are just plain dull or underdeveloped and rushed. Its a pity, since there are some ideas here.
It was a disappointment and I have no intention or desire to pick this one up on DVD.

Meet the Robinsons.
A deliberately retro-future movie is somewhat undercut by its packaging and marketing, and yet, unlike Shrek, knows that the point is to have fun.
The movie starts in the present with Lewis, an 12 year old orphan who fills the orphanage with his attempts at scientific progress. His inventions are wacky, interesting…and don’t work. His luck changes though with the arrival of Wilbur Robinson, who claims to be from the future, and pursuing the thief of another time machine. Soon Lewis is traveling to a gloriously realized retro future in the efforts to counter the “man with the bowler hat”, even if all he really wants is to meet his mother.
The movie’s plot slows to a crawl when we hit that future, and the movie is mostly a series of character vignettes until the plot returns. Still, the movie has an wacky and zany sense of humor, even if the results aren’t always logical.
Like most time travel movies, lots of things don’t make sense with its rules of time travel. Still, the movie kept us all entertained, with some parts laugh out funny (the dinosaur, for example). A much more entertaining movie than Shrek the Third.