Get ready for an adventure nine lifetimes in the making.
Guillermo del Toro
Robert Persichetti Jr.
Running Time: 90 minutes
US Certificate: PG UK Certificate: PG
Country: United States
Shrek really did get stale towards the end of the franchise but Puss in Boots comes across as a fun and generally amusing spin off that deserves it’s foray onto the big screen. To Chris Miller’s credit, at just over 80 minutes, this prequel is short and sweet and doesn’t try to be anything it isn’t.
Puss in Boots is set years before Antonio Banderas’s sword-fighting kitty met Shrek and company. Whilst trying to steal magic beans from the infamous criminals Jack and Jill (Thornton and Sedaris), Puss crosses Kitty Softpaws (Hayek), a beautiful (looking at it from a cat’s point of view) and daring feline who leads him to Humpty Dumpty (Galifianakis) – once a friend but now a mortal enemy. The two decide to put their differences aside and try and steal the elusive magic beans from the Giant’s Castle.
As usual in today’s animated movies there’s a lot for adults and kids to enjoy which makes movie-going with your wee one less of a chore. There are certain parts – like a gag about how eggs fare in prison – parents will be hoping that their children don’t understand or don’t ask any awkward follow up questions. The jokes do bomb at times but generally they stay at a tittersome, if not hillarious, level and the fairy tale references come thick and fast. PIB doesn’t veer to far from the tried and tested formula of the Shrek series but the gags and atmosphere are more up to the standard of the original.
Puss in Boots showcases a fine voiceover cast who do a stellar job. Zach Galifianakis in particular really makes Humpty his own and completely disconnects the viewer from his real-life persona. There are no surprises from Bandaras as he gives the film a sense of continuity and classic cool.
It's Got: Great voiceover performances, mostly good gags, a fresher feel than Shrek 3D
It Needs: Less of the awful jokes, to be seen as the short and sweet bit of fun that it is
A surprisingly decent, if not consistently funny, spin off from the Shrek series. Definitely better than expected, mostly thanks to a short and sweet runtime and great voiceover cast. Probably a success because Mike Myers is nowhere near it.