As fairy-tale fans will know, Rumpelstiltskin specialises in tricksy contracts. So when Shrek drunkenly signs an agreement to be a real ‘ogre for a day’ in return for just one day of his life, he doesn’t realise the catch. Suddenly, Shrek is thrown into a world in which ogres are hated, but Rumpel rules the kingdom, hosting all-day raves with black-clad witches and routinely scamming the quivering inhabitants of a depleted Far Far Away.
All very ‘Back to the Future II’, and it’s a fun twist that allows for a fresh perspective on familiar characters. Fiona is now a warrior princess, Donkey is a slave to the witches, and Puss? Well, let’s just say he’s been living the good life. The plot’s initially involving – and if it’s too complex for toddlers, it compensates with humour, visual invention and a 3D wow factor. This can’t match the original’s laugh count, though, and the story wears thin. Still, with warmth and charm, ‘Shrek Forever After’ is an entertaining conclusion to the franchise – one that parents should happily endure. But let’s hope that’s all, folks.