A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that for kids who are familiar with Shrek and his pals, there’s nothing in Scared Shrekless, but it's a very funny Halloween special. Mild peril includes some inferences of a ghostly presence as well as some brief instances of knives or magic wands brandished as weapons, and in one scene, characters sing about chopping off heads and then laughing about it. Expect a fair amount of the trademark potty humor (vomiting, pooping, and the like) that Shrek is famous for, as well as one very subtle bit of sexual innuendo. Of course there’s also the major marketing tie-in as well, since Shrek’s face graces everything from lunch boxes to loungewear, but more than anything, families should prepare to laugh at this treat of a Halloween special.
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What's the story?
In SCARED SHREKLESS, it’s the ogre tots’ first Halloween, and while they’re out spooking trick-or-treaters, the fairytale characters are setting up camp in Shrek (voiced by Mike Myers) and Fiona’s (Cameron Diaz) house to scare them. When their surprise doesn’t have the effect they hoped for, Shrek challenges Donkey (Eddie Murphy), Puss (Antonio Banderas), Gingy (Conrad Vernon), and the others to a scary tales contest at Lord Farquaad’s creepy abandoned castle. As they swap terrifying tall tales and keep an eye out for Farquaad’s ghost, it’s a battle of nerves until just one winner remains.
Is it any good?
Four full-length movies and two holiday specials later, these ogres prove that they’re anything but rough around the edges. Shrek and Fiona are as imperfectly lovable as ever, and their hodge-podge of faithful friends can still dish out the laughs with the best of them. Longtime fans won’t be disappointed in this festive tale, which revisits Donkey and Puss’s contentious relationship, gives the Duloc singers the stage once more, and chronicles Gingy’s attempts to create the perfect mate.
No one familiar with Shrek will be surprised that Scared Shrekless has its fair share of potty humor (vomiting, a kick to the groin, and Gingy poops sprinkles in a moment of fear), and the Halloween theme and spooky setting calls for ghostly voices and some very mild peril. But fear not; none of this makes it off-limits for kids.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about media marketing. Why do advertisers use the images of characters like Shrek on products like candy, clothing, and accessories? What kinds of things have you seen characters’ pictures on? Does seeing Scared Shrekless make you want these items more? Why or why not?
Do you think the Shrek stories should continue? Have you enjoyed the later movies as much as you did the first couple? How do they keep the stories fresh and funny? How do new characters help the movies succeed?
Is Shrek a good role model? What are some of his best qualities? Is there anything about him that you wouldn’t want to imitate? Can Shrek be considered a hero in any way? How does he show that he’s a good person? A good friend?
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