Shrek: media skills learning to… write about films
In traditional fairy tales… how do princes, princesses and ogres behave? list examples….
Language is an important device, and I am going to write about how language can create the impression of good and evil in both in characters, and in films. The film, ‘Shrek’, opens with…
now you need to write about how the film opens. how is it different to a conventional fairy tale? why are the viewers surprised? what does such an opening suggest?
When the storybook characters arrive,… write about what Shrek threatens to do to them how does Shrek try to frighten them? how do the storybook characters react? what does this suggest about Shrek?
When Donkey approaches, Shrek roars at him and tries to intimidate him. Donkey is not frightened and…
write about how Donkey responds to Shrek. why does Donkey laugh at Shrek? write about how Donkey repeatedly irritates Shrek - running into his house, bouncing on his chair, peering through the window etc write about how the mice tease Shrek. why is this so funny? what does Donkey's behaviour and the mice's behaviour suggest about this ogre? is he as frightening as an ogre should be?
Shrek and Donkey visit Duloc, to try to reclaim Shrek's swamp from Lord Farquaad. Donkey thinks that Shrek is too kind and should not have to ask as the swamp belongs to him anyway. Donkey tells Shrek…
how does Donkey think that Shrek should get his swamp back? write about what Shrek threatens to do to the villagers write about how Shrek offers to solve to dispute - 'over a pint' what does this suggest about Shrek's character?
When Shrek breaks into the castle to rescue Princess Fiona, he acts like an ogre when… write about how he greets the Princess how does she respond? what does this suggest?
Although Shrek appears violent, when we learn that he has failed to slay the dragon because… write about the reason that Shrek gives for not slaying the dragon and what this shows about him
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 Shrek or his appearance. He tries to make them frightened by reminding them that________________________________. Although Shrek is an ogre________________________________.
In contrast to Shrek, Lord Farquaad is cruel. He watches the torture of the Gingerbread Man, and then… when Lord Farquaad sees the torture he taunts the gingerbread man 'run, run, run as fast as you can.' what does this show about his character? what does Lord Farquaad do with the gingerbread man's buttons? where does Lord Farquaad throw the gingerbread man? write three sentences about your impressions of Lord Farquaad so far
Lord Farquaad is all set to marry Princess Fiona, until he sees that when the sun sets she ___________________________________. Lord Farquaad speaks to her in a cruel way, and he orders his knights to 'Get that out of my sight.' Lord Farquaad calls off the wedding, but he still proclaims _________________________..
Lord Farquaad is deceptive because he should only become king __________________. It is clear that Lord Farquaad does not love the Princess, but agrees to marriage because he wants ___________________________.
When a Director is making a film it is important that he/she uses a variety of camera angles to create certain effects. At the beginning of the film, Shrek scares the storybook characters away… write about the close up shot of Shrek's mouth and say why you think this close up shot is used here.
Close up shots are also useful for focusing the viewer's attention on the characters' emotions… write about the use of the close up shots of Princess Fiona and Shrek smiling. why are close up shots effective here?
Tension is created when Lord Farquaad is introduced. Instead of focusing on his face, the camera shows… what part of Lord Farquaad's body does the camera focus on? what does this suggest?
When Shrek visits Lord Farquaad's castle, the camera moves from ground level upwards to reveal his tower. This is called a high angle shot. It is useful because it makes Lord Farquaad seem_______________________________, and Shrek and Donkey appear______________________________.
Low angle shots are effectively used because they show Lord Farquaad looking down on ____________ and____________. Mid angle shots are used when Shrek and Donkey are relaxing together, and when Shrek has cooked Princess Fiona a meal. These shots show both of the characters at the same time and have the effect of __________________.
Sometimes, a character's back is shown rather than their face. This is used to suggest isolation from other characters. For example… write about what happens when Princess Fiona leaves Shrek and goes inside write about how Shrek shows that he wants to end the friendship between himself and Donkey
Presentational devices are also used to influence the viewer, and to make them see a particular character in a certain way. The story begins in Shrek's swamp. what does the swamp look like? write about how this is the expected home for an ogre why does Donkey go into the swamp? what does this suggest about the owner of the swamp?
where does Lord Farquaad live? what would you expect a castle to be like ? (splendour - happy - glittering with gold? etc…) how is what we see different from what we expect? (torture, hooded figures, violence etc)
When we first meet Shrek, it is obvious that he is supposed to look like an ogre because… describe what Shrek looks like in detail, where he lives, how he bathes, how he pulls the wax out of his ear etc…
Lord Farquaad seems like a typical Lord. He wears… describe Lord Farquaad's appearance, his home, and what happens if he marries a Princess
Lighting is also used to persuade the viewer to think of a character in a certain way. When Princess Fiona leaves Shrek, Shrek sits with his back to the camera and stares at the moon. why do you think darkness is used here? what is it supposed to reflect?
The images of light are used thoughtfully too. Shrek and Princess Fiona are often pictured walking through meadows… why do you think they are pictured walking through the woods on a sunny day with the brids chirping and the Princess singing? what do you think the brilliant light at the end of the film is supposed to suggest?
When we first meet Lord Farquaad, and the hooded figure, there is marching music… how does this make the viewer feel? what does it suggest is going to happen? when Shrek enters Lord Farquaad's arena, what does the loud organ music suggest?
When Shrek overhears the conversation between Donkey and Princess Fiona, he misinterprets the conversation. At this moment, the music is slow… what does the slow music suggest? why do you think there is a song about broken dreams and promises? describe the effect of having Donkey and the dragon crying
Donkey is an important character in the film, as he helps us to understand the character of Shrek. When Donkey refuses to listen to Shrek, ignores the 'Beware of the ogre' sign, and follows him back to the swamp… what does this show us about Shrek's character? write about how Donkey turns the tournament scene into comedy
what does this show us about Shrek's powers to be a real ogre? write three sentences about Shrek's relationship with Donkey how does Donkey make us believe that Shrek is not a typical man eating ogre?
After analysing the characters of Shrek and Lord Farquaad, I have come to the conclusion that although Shrek seems like a traditional ogre… write about why you think Shrek is different to a typical ogre - has friends, rescues Princess, finds love gets married etc
Although Lord Farquaad looks like a Lord, his actions suggest that he is evil. give examples of his evil nature- torture, stealing Shrek's swamp, makes his knights fight Shrek, rejection of Princess, false claim to be king etc.
The story of Shrek uses presentational devices to reverse our expectations, so that by the end of the film… write two sentences about how the viewer feels towards Shrek and Lord Farquaad
Perhaps the message of the story is that you can't judge a book by _________________________.