The Ogre Dream, apparently, is to do everything manly for manly motives, earning public approval, right, & success along the way. – Good vanquish evil & not be too righteous how. All may laugh to see the impotent evil fall from make-believe pedestals. & all enjoy the bawdy way. Our hatred of injustice is vindicated. Great men ennoble it greatly, who deliver us from our enemies with obvious divine sanction, thriving on difficulty as if nothing strange may happen. – What luck, the world does need saving…
The princess-ogre is now a warrior princess: a female ogre is both man & woman: a manly woman. She is princess by day, but ogre by night; apparently, seeing is not believing. We call night & day simply day, but in the comic story, the cause of both princess & ogre is the ogre.
But that reversal undergoes a nightmarish reversal itself: the ogre is somehow domesticated: he must take care of his infants, do housework, wave at tourists invading his realm. People now deem his roar a good show & no longer fear him. They think this caged animal a pet. All his manliness – aloofness & bawdy humor both – mysteriously misplaced. How did we get here?
A deceptious villain now rules the kingdom by illusions. He seems incredibly weak; perhaps survival requires villainy; perhaps fear leads him to power. His wigs & mock-formality suggest aristocratic ambition: but they are just an image – & their reality is just a convention. Nevertheless, everyone wants something they think he can give. They sense painfully their neediness, compared with his plenty, perhaps. He is tyranny itself, embodying all desires. But the truth is that he rules over ogres not by speeches, but by the piper’s gadget, which moves them against themselves. Thus, the piper appears more powerful, for he compels men.
Shrek wanted to return to his origins; apparently, once he wants that, they will have never existed. Now he wants to return to the life he escaped – even this may kill him. In the end, there are only two speeches amidst the action, both his. First, he accepts impending death. Second, he is grateful for getting back his life, which he had lost. Apparently, love brings him back: but do the ogres destroy the villain? I want to say: yes, they kill the goddamn tyrant. But in the story, Shrek loves the woman more than war, but cannot get love, except perhaps by victory in war, which he cannot get. Winning the war would probably make him king, which he does not want to be: this is his manly part, independent & powerful. Loving that woman weakened him, rendering him defenseless & domesticated.
The last in the series. Only for the fans.