Apr 302021

Shrek still holds up 20 years later, both in story, humor and even animation, albeit rougher when you compare it to the higher-end CGI animation today.



— 20th Anniversary Edition —

Genre(s): Animation, Comedy, Fantasy
Universal Pictures | PG – 90 min. – $29.98 | May 11, 2021

Date Published: 04/30/2021 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Andrew Adamson, Vicky Jenson
Writer(s): William Steig (book); Ted Elliott & Terry Rossio and Joe Stillman & Roger S.H. Schulman (written by)
Voice Cast: Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, John Lithgow, Vincent Cassel

Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, Music Videos
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K, Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 3

Audio: English (DTS-X), French (DTS 5.1), Spanish (DTS 5.1)
Video: 2160p/Widescreen 1.85
Dynamic Range: HDR10
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Codecs: HEVC / H.265
Region(s): A, B, C

Universal Studios Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

THE MOVIE — 4¼/5

Plot Synopsis: Once upon a time, in a far away swamp, there lived an ogre named Shrek (MIKE MYERS) whose precious solitude is suddenly shattered by an invasion of annoying fairy tale characters, including high-energy Donkey (EDDIE MURPHY). They were all banished from their kingdom by the evil Lord Farquaad (JOHN LITHGOW). Determined to save their home – not to mention his – Shrek cuts a deal with Farquaad and sets out to rescue Princess Fiona (CAMERON DIAZ) to be Farquaad’s bride. Rescuing the Princess may be small compared to her deep, dark secret.

Quick Hit Review: As far as second-tier (i.e. non-Pixar) animated films go, Shrek is one of the better films out there and nearly a decade later, still plays well both in terms of animation and comedy, this despite some old references such as Fiona’s mid-air kick spoofed from The Matrix; aside from that other early 2000s references work on their own.

I actually had not seen Shrek in many years but still found it quite funny and as someone who isn’t the biggest fan of Mike Meyers (though I don’t hate him either), this is one of the funniest roles (albeit just voice) that he’s done even if it’s somewhat a carryover from his Austin Powers movies. Not to be outdone, Eddie Murphy also gives one of his better performances in yet another example of perfection in voice casting. (copied from my 15th anniversary Blu-ray review)



This 3-disc set comes in a standard HD slim case and comes with a glossy, title-embossed, slip cover. Inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy.

DISC 1 (4K UHD):
Shrek’s Interactive Journey – Here you get a map where you can go to various locations and check out the artwork created and those that “helped inspire the creation of Shrek’s world”. Nothing really noteworthy here and in fact could’ve just been called an artwork gallery instead.

Spotlight on Donkey (11:38) – This featurette obviously focuses on the Eddie Murphy-voiced Donkey character. The cast and crew members talk about the character and how Murphy did a great job voicing him. This is a mixture of new interviews with archival ones plus scenes from each Shrek movie.

Secrets of Shrek (3:52) – This featurette spotlights the various fairy tale characters that were shown throughout the original movie.

Deleted Scenes (8:01) – Here we get three storyboard outlined sequences that weren’t animated but we get to see some story ideas, a few of which were used in the sequels.

We also get a set of features under “Shrek, Rattle & Roll”: Shrek in the Swamp: Karaoke Dance Party (2:53), Music Videos for “Best Years of Our Lives” (3:08) by Baha Men, “I’m a Believer” (3:15) from Smash Mouth and “What’s up Duloc” (3:57) from Shrek the Musical.

Filmmakers’ Commentary – Directors Andrew Adamson & Vicky Jenson and Producer Aron Warner sit down for a low-key but still fun and informative commentary track. They divulge where certain concepts came from, praising the voice talent and some of the more typical commentary elements.

DISC 2 (BLU-RAY) contains all of the above plus: The Animators’ Corner, a picture-in-picture function featuring interviews with various members of the cast (Meyers, Murphy, Diaz, etc) and crew (director Andrew Adamson, etc), some behind-the-scenes recording footage, storyboard artwork and pre-visualization computer graphics.

Shrek’s Short Films (24:59) — “Shrek in the Swamp Karaoke Party”, “Far Far Away Idol” and “Puss in Boots: The Three Diablos”.

Shrek’s Halloween Favorites (51:03) — “The Ghost of Lord Farquaad”, “Scared Shrekless”, “Thriller Night” and “The Pig Who Cried Werewolf”

Shrek’s Holiday Favorites (1:05:00) — “Shrek the Halls”, “Donkey’s Caroling Christmas-tacular” and “Shrek’s Yule Log”

The Adventures of Puss in Boots TV Episodes (1:55:20) — Here you can watch five episodes from the series that surprisingly lasted six seasons and 78 episodes. Not sure why Universal/DreamWorks never released the complete series at this point.


VIDEO – 4/5

Universal releases Shrek onto 4K Ultra HD, presented with a 1.85 widescreen aspect ratio and given a 2160p high-definition transfer. For the most part the picture does look fine, albeit I can’t say it’s all that significant of an ugrade, if at all. Detail looks okay though this early 21st century CGI animation doesn’t quite benefit and certainly not the difference from DVD to Blu-ray. However, colors do look pretty good from the green in Shrek’s skin to the browns and grays on Donkey.

AUDIO – 4½/5

The disc comes with a DTS-X track so probably a slight update on the Dolby TrueHD 7.1 that is on the Blu-ray disc. Even so, it’s a solid lossless track, some good depth for the, at the time, pop music and ambient noises, as well as outputting crisp and clear dialogue from the center speaker.



Overall, Shrek still holds up 20 years later, both in story, humor and even animation, albeit rougher when you compare it to the higher-end CGI animation today. This 4K Ultra HD release from Universal offers fine video and good audio, although it’s not fantastic, probably a minor upgrade over the Blu-ray.


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