The Characters of Shrek and Lord Farquaad
In this essay I am going to analyse the characters of Shrek and Lord
Farquaad. I will also explore the different presentational devices
used by the film creators of Shrek to craft an unusual fairytale.
This film cost $6 million to produce. It is based on a traditional
fairytale type story but subverted.
The film was produced by Dreamworks - Steven Spielberg's production
company. Dreamworks make animated films. It has a rival animation
company in the form of Disney. It was Disney who first brought out a
long animated film which was Snow White in the 1950's.
The first computer generated animation was also brought out by Disney
called Toy Story in the 1990's.
In traditional fairy tales princes are tall, strapping, handsome and
charming. They are the good natured characters in the story who would
ordinarily rescue the princess. Ogres or giants or any general evil
being would be big, ugly, horrible, nasty creatures and would be the
wicked characters in the story. For example the story of Jack and the
beanstalk' where the nasty giant is chasing Jack shouting "Fe Fi Fo
Fum! I smell the blood of an Englishman!" and obviously trying to eat
Jack. He is evidently an evil character. The prince in 'Snow White and
the Seven Dwarfs' is a fine example of a typical classic fairytale
prince. He comes to rescue Snow White and kisses her when she was in a
deep, everlasting sleep to awaken her.
Language is an important device and I am going to write about how
language can create the impression of good and evil in both
characters, and in films. The film 'Shrek' begins as if we are reading
a book or a fairytale. The character Shrek is reading the fairytale
story and roughly halfway through he exclaims "Yeah right!" and rips
the page out of the book and consequently uses it as toilet paper! We
are astonished as the viewers as we were expecting a conventional
fairytale. There is a good use of toilet humour and it is aimed at
children or teenagers. We know right from the start that Shrek is a
nice character as he has a comical impact on the film. The sort of
humour makes it different from normal, conventional fairytales and
also the big, ugly ogre would normally be a nasty creature but we know
straight away that this is not the case and he proves to be quite the
contrary as the story unfolds.
At the beginning of the film Shrek tries to threaten the characters
that he meets, but Donkey, the mice, the storybook characters and
Princess Fiona are not intimidated by him or his appearance. He tries
to make them frightened by reminding them that he's a scary, horrible
monster. Although Shrek is an ogre he is really nice deep down.
When the storybook characters arrive Shrek threatens to throw them all
out of his swamp and back where they came from. There...