In this essay I am being asked how the makers of Shrek use presentational devices to reverse traditional expectations of the fairy tale genre.I am going to show how the film uses presentational devices to encourage the viewer that Shrek is another “traditional” fairy tale but as the film goes on you can almost instantly recognize that it is going to be different from most fairy tales.The beginning of the film automatically sets the tone for the rest of the film. It begins with the “traditional fairy tale” opening … Once upon a time in a land far, far away .
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…. it is as if the film is going to be read from a story book.The book is a big brown one with fancy writing and pictures on every page.
The pictures are of castles, dragons, princes and princesses and of course a happy ending. The music is very calming and slow which is very common in fairy tales. These certain devices have a massive but powerful impact on the viewer and do definitely set them up for the usual fairy tale.From the moment the music changes to an upbeat fast tune you can automatically see it is different. This makes the film look modern, as it is. The whole idea of the film being a traditional fairy tale are almost crushed as Shrek rips out the pages of the book and uses them as toilet paper and distinctively says ” Yeah, like that’s ever ‘gonna happen “At first the film makers give the impression that Shrek is an extremely scary or frightening character who has fun in scaring villagers, but in actual fact Shrek is quite the opposite he does want friends and enjoys the company when donkey runs into the swamp due to being chased by villagers and Shrek is very surprised when donkey isn’t scared of him as he has been on his own for so long and most people run a mile when they see Shrek’s “scary, ugly” appearance and it seems he is quite relieved.
Although this film is not a traditional fairy tale the villagers act very originally n traditionally they go in search of Shrek with pitch forks and lit torches but when they come across Shrek they stand extremely still and when Shrek’s roars at them it is quite dramatic and the villagers are terrified and flee the swamp.The camera devices work brilliantly in this particular scene they do long distance camera angles when the villagers are approaching Shrek and close shots are used when Shrek is roaring and scaring them off. This shows the facial expressions of the frightened villagers close up and it gives the “scared out of their skin” look.In my opinion DreamWorks have made this an extremely successful film, the presentational devices used are outstanding. This appeals to the viewers greatly the sound devices, the contrast and light techniques, and of course the camera angles to give a dramatic feel to the film.This film would probably appeal more to children than adults more as the devices are so well thought out it gives a viewer of any the impression that the film is a traditional fairy story.
The bright design, imaginary characters and humorous personalities of each one are a great idea for children and that in my view is why the film is so successful.