How do the film makers of Shrek 2 use presentational devices to parody different types of films?

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When we watch different films, we can tell from the starting of the movie to evaluate what “type” of film it’s going to be. For example, when you watch a James Bond movie you can tell its going to be action/adventure because right at the start, you see James Bond in a short clip blowing something up or doing something that makes it look like an action scene, then the James Bond music starts, which has loud sound affects and a fast paced tune as well as scenes of guns and women dancing.

When you start watching the movie Shrek 2, you can be fooled that you are watching a traditional fairytale, this is because right at the start you see a fairytale book opening with pictures of traditional fairy tales such as sleeping beauty. But then when the starting scenes open, you realise this is actually a light-hearted spoof comedy of many parodies, when you look at the wolf reading ‘Pork Illustrated’ and many other spoofs throughout the film.

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The elements of a traditional fairy tale are of a story featuring folkloric characters such as fairies, goblins, elves, trolls, giants, and others. These fairy tale stories often involve princes and princesses, and usually have a happy ending. When you watch Shrek 2 you know this is not your stereotypical fairy tale because throughout the movie you will realise there is one main plot in the movie, but this main plot contains a lot of sub-plots which have the traditional fairytale characters, “puss-in-boots” and “Pinocchio”, and funny spoofs of fairytales, movies and American stores, books and locations.

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And through those elements these spoofs create the comedy atmosphere as a movie not as a fairytale.

The different genres of films that I know of are the following:-

* Action

* Adventure

* Comedy

* Crime/Gangster

* Drama

* Epic/Historical

* Horror

* Musicals

* Science Fiction

* War

We can recognise different film genres by the openings (as I’ve explained with James Bond before). And by the presentational devices they have, either in the opening or throughout the film. These presentational devices can be:-

* Music

* Sound Effects

* Dialogue (mood/tone)

* Different Camera Angled shots

* Different Camera Distance shots

* Costume and Props Positioning

* Signifiers

* Lighting and setting

Now I will explain what a parody is and show how Shrek 2 is related to them.

A parody or spoof film is a comedy that satirizes other film genres or classical films. The five main conventions for this genre are:

* Sarcasm

* Huge stereotyping

* Mocking other films or scenes from serious movies

* Violence with no consequence for characters’ actions

* Obvious meanings to character’s actions

These are usually light family movies even if they are parodying serious, dramatic, or violence movies.

In Shrek 2 there are MANY different types of parodies. Such as parodies of Stores (Versarchery, Gap Queen), and parodies of TV shows (COPS and American Idol). And locations in America (The entrance to Far Far Away closely resembles the entrance to the Paramount Studios lot). And parodies of fairytales (Blind mice, gingerbread man). But most importantly the parodies of different types of films.

The film maker uses many parodies of films, I am going to give examples of 3 film parodies and give the presentational devices used to get this parody across to the audience.

The first film parody I will discuss is the parody of Lord Of the Rings. In the Honeymoon Montage at the beginning of the film, the couple is seen being fitted for wedding rings, a flying ring dropping on Fiona’s finger and a red fiery writing afterwards. These are a parody of events from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. For this certain parody I believe it is probably the most obvious parody, it is shown across very similar and exact to the Lord of the Rings scene.

The presentational devices used to get this parody across consist of firstly showing a cauldron making the ring from a high-angle close-up shot, and then the ring being flung in the air with a high-angle, long distance shot which shows an obvious copy of the Lord of the Rings. When the ring is on Fiona’s finger a very close-up shot is shown of ONLY the Ring, and the exact similar style of writing appears on the ring as it does of the ring in The Lord of the Rings.

Another presentational device used is the dark lighting used, showing us a scary atmosphere and very powerful ring being created from The Lord of the Rings. And looking carefully at the background, this is the same location as in The Lord of the Rings, a cave with cracks of fire; these are the props being used to show this. And the sound effects of the ring being flung is the exact same as in The Lord of the Rings.

The second parody I will be discussing is the parody of Zorro. Antonio Banderas’ as “Puss In Boots” uses his sword to write a “P” on a tree with three strokes. He also played “Zorro” in The Mask of Zorro, who is known for using his sword to write “Z” with three strokes.

The presentational devices to put this across are that firstly the character’s dialogue; this is the same character Antonio Banderas’ as Zorro so the parody works very well. The clothing and props of “Puss In Boots” are the exact same of Zorro’s including the ‘bendy’ sword. This parody is shown as a close-up mid-angle shot of the “P” being swifted on the tree, the exact same angle as used in Zorro, and the same sound affects used when writing it. With all these elements added in this is a very obvious parody and it is put across very well to the audience.

The third parody that I will be discussing is the parody of Spider-Man. in the opening “Honeymoon Montage” when Fiona wipes the mud off of Shrek while he hangs upside down and kisses him is in reference to Spider-Man when Mary Jane kisses Spider-Man in the same manner.

The presentational devices used to put this across are the mid-angle close-up shot of the kiss EXACTLY as Spider-Man besides from the characters, location and mud instead of a mask. Another presentational device is the props being used, the rope hanging him upside down; this is the same as in Spider-Man (spidey-web).

I think that the makers of Shrek 2 have been very effective in their parodies. I believe this because after discussing and looking at the examples I gave, the makers have chosen many presentational devices and detailed evidence to make the parody as real and as part of Shrek. And not made it difficult to see the obvious parody and comedy behind it even if the parody is from a serious movie (Alien).

I believe some parodies are made for different ages of audience, something a younger person might not see as an obvious parody but an older person would (Kissing on the beach- From Here to Eternity). And some younger people would see an obvious Lord of The Rings and Spider-Man parody, there is also the young-adult range of audience, Ghostbusters and Alien parodies. These parodies are very effective through going to a wide range of audiences.

There are however some parodies which you have to watch more then once to figure them out such as the Alien coming out of the chest, and the potion making in Charlie and the Chocolate factory. But, overall I believe that the parodies are very effective and obvious most of the time, and it’s the parodies themselves what make Shrek 2 such a funny and entertaining film.

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How do the film makers of Shrek 2 use presentational devices to parody different types of films?. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from

How do the film makers of Shrek 2 use presentational devices to parody different types of films?

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