Donkey annoys Shrek on their journey but when they are near the castle the lighting changes quickly as one minute there is a beautiful blue sky with lush green lawns surrounding it, while the next black clouds appear with smoke spreading across the planes. There is a slight change in the music as it changes from joyful to raucous lightning and thunder. The camera changes its angle by zooming back and forth across a rope bridge, which is above a boiling lake of lava.
As they reach the castle, Shrek and Donkey split up, as Donkey is pure mischief, he ends up finding the dragon. The dragon starts spraying rows of fire so Donkey sprints towards Shrek who is flung by the dragon into a room located in the tallest tower.
The camera this time captures the fire as it changes into slow motion when it goes over Donkey’s head. Donkey seduces the dragon with his charm. Incidentally, even the traditional fearsome dragon is not really a traditional dragon – it turns out to be a she-dragon who wears lipstick and is only fearsome because she’s lonely and unloved.
This links to Shrek as the dragon should be scary but has reversed its nature to be good and kind hearted just like Shrek. It also has feelings and again people are scared of it just as people are when they meet Shrek. Donkey sees them as being normal people.
The music is very soothing when Shrek lands in the princess’s room.
He slowly rises and instead of sweeping the princess off her feet he starts to shake her violently. This is very un-fairy tale like as Shrek is not a prince and does not kiss the princess like in Snow White. He picks up the princess and sweeps up Donkey and makes his exit before the dragon kills them all. If it were a fairy tale, it would have now ended with them getting married, but it continues. During this scene Shrek quotes, “I’ve got to save my ass,” which the princess took differently. She thought that Shrek was referring to himself but was actually talking about Donkey. Shrek does care about Donkey even though it does not seem to appear otherwise he would not have gone back to save him.
Princess Fiona becomes upset about the rather abnormal way Shrek and his ‘noble steed’ rescue her, as it is not fairytale-like. On their way to Duloc much is noticed about the princess. She might dream of the fairytale life but she is no princess. Princess Fiona is worse than Shrek as she belches, kick boxes, blows up frogs with straws, steals birds’ eggs for breakfast and sacrifices her beauty to be with the beast she loves. Shrek does not come up to the princess’s standards of beauty and elegance she is upset by his looks. It is very unusual the way they used World Wrestling Federation moves on Robin Hood, which is great and successful. The movie makes fun of every meaningless element in Disney fairytales and includes some colossal fighting scenes, like famous action sequences from the Matrix – intertextuality of modern/traditional books and films.
The ending is like a traditional fairytale as Shrek stops the wedding between Princess Fiona and Farquaad. Farquaad himself is a ‘freak’ – a four-foot small midget. Farquaad can’t face up to his ‘difference’ and so he pays the ultimate price – the “fearsome” dragon eats him. They marry and go off in a horse-drawn carriage like in Cinderella. ‘They live happily ever after.’ There is then a song where the whole cast participates including the fairytale creatures. This is well structured and is inspiring. Shrek reversed the tradition of fairy tales right to the end as he took the full advantage and made a fun out of them, so viewers would find it humorous and strange.