“Shrek” was released 20 years ago Tuesday. And as Smash Mouth once sang, “The years start coming, and they don’t stop coming.”
In an opinion piece for The Guardian, writer Scott Tobias took the opportunity to knock the DreamWorks classic down a few pegs. Twitter users were not having it.
Tobias considers the film’s 2001 debut as “the moment blockbuster animation circled the drain.”
“Shrek is a terrible movie. It’s not funny,” Tobias wrote. “It looks awful. It would influence many unfunny, awful-looking computer-animated comedies that copied its formula of glib self-reference and sickly sweet sentimentality.”
He also believes that “Shrek” is not only derivative of 1987’s “The Princess Bride” but fractured the “fractured fairytale” subgenre to the point where the stories of the Brothers Grimm and others no longer hold reverence or relevance for the modern viewer.
“It encouraged a destructive, know-it-all attitude toward the classics that made any earnest engagement with them seem like a waste of time,” Tobias explained. “Those once-upon-a-times were now rendered stodgy and lame, literally toilet paper.”
Tobias quickly became a target for both thoughtful takedowns of his argument and good old-fashioned trolling. Or, ogre-ing in this case.
User @LiamDrydenEtc suggested that Tobias may be out of touch and even a little bitter about the film’s success.
the joyless chud that wrote this article was nearly in his 30s when Shrek came out, so the image of him stewing in rage over the lasting popularity of an animated fairytale kid's movie for two decades is EXTREMELY funny https://t.co/SQswWuie9j
— Liam 🐝 (@LiamDrydenEtc) May 18, 2021
@ElleRudd_ pointed out the ridiculousness of his opening argument.
My favourite thing about that Guardian review of Shrek is that he launches straight in to the concept of plumbing being unrealistic – in a story where a talking donkey has children with a eyeshadow wearing dragon.
— Elle Rudd 🌻 (@ElleRudd_) May 18, 2021
@BeeBabs launched into the real questions.
You've insulted Shrek. OK so how did your life change? Did you get the guy? Did you get the job? Is your house any bigger?
— Bolu Babalola (@BeeBabs) May 18, 2021
Many users, like @robertliefeld, took the opportunity to reflect on what “Shrek” meant to both the entertainment industry and its target audience, kids.
In truth, SHREK changed the game, giving Dreamworks animation an era of dominance. My youngest was 2 when Shrek arrived and he couldn’t stop watching it. 4 when these sequel arrived, his younger bro, now 2. Then my daughter followed a year later. Their favorite franchise. https://t.co/fnfUhqGepG
— robliefeld (@robertliefeld) May 18, 2021
Unfunny or not, “Shrek” remains a pop culture milestone 20 years later. Both a critical darling and commercial smash, the film has spurred three sequels (with a fourth in the works) and even a hit Broadway musical. Last year, it was selected for preservation in the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” It was the first DreamWorks film and the first animated feature not produced by Disney to receive the honor.
Read original story ‘Shrek’ Fans Diss ‘Joyless Chud’ Guardian Critic Who Called Film ‘Unfunny and Overrated’ At TheWrap