[[caption-width-right:350:''[[TagLine What the]] [[IncrediblyLamePun Sh]][[OverusedRunningGag rek]] [[AlternateUniverse just happened?]]'']]

''Shrek Forever After'' (also known as ''Shrek: The Final Chapter'') is the fourth installment of the ''Franchise/{{Shrek}}'' tetralogy released in 2010 under Creator/DreamWorksAnimation.

The story follows Shrek, married and now the father of three ogre children, who finds himself in a rut, longing for the days when he was a "real ogre". It just so happens that after angrily storming out of his own children's birthday party he gets just the opportunity he was looking for from the smooth-talking Rumpelstiltskin (Walt Dohrn). After he agrees to trade off one day from his childhood that he doesn't even remember in exchange for one day of romping and terrorizing in an alternate timeline supposedly free of consequence, Shrek realizes that Rumpelstiltskin took away the day that he was born. Now in order to restore things to the way they were, Shrek must team up with the alternate versions of his friends in order to share true love's kiss with his wife Fiona, who has become the leader of an ogre resistance against Rumpelstiltskin, who, as it turns out, was almost granted control over Far Far Away before Shrek rescued Fiona from her castle all those years ago.

Not to be confused with ''WesternAnimation/ShrekFourD'', a theme park attraction set after the events of the first film.

!!''Shrek Forever After'' provides examples of:
%%* ActionizedSequel
* ActionGirl: Fiona.
* AlternateUniverse: Due to Rumpelstiltskin's plotting, the movie takes place in a universe in which Shrek had never been born.
* AnAesop:
** You donít know what youíve got till itís gone.
** Appreciate what you have.
** If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
** True love isnít always love at first sight.
* ArmorPiercingQuestion: This.
-->'''Shrek:''' But...''I'm'' your true love.\\
'''Fiona:''' [[spoiler:Then where were you when I needed you?]]
** "Shrek, you have three beautiful children, a wife who loves you, friends who adore you--you have everything! Why is it that the only person who can't see that is you?"
* AxeCrazy: Rumpelstiltskin. Don't be fooled by the trickster shell. Deep down, he's really a homicidal sociopath.
* AmbiguouslyGay: Cookie.
* AwardBaitSong: [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgVIYYg6qyc Darling I Do]] by Landon Pigg & Lucy Schwartz.
* BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor: Pretty much the theme of the movie, Shrek pine for the days before he was married and was feared by humans. When he finally gets it, he does enjoy it for a bit until he realises the consequences of his wish and how important he truly was in the grand scheme of of his world.
* BadassArmy: The ogres.
* BadBoss: Rumpelstiltskin. He seems like a good one at first, letting his witches having a rave in his castle and all that. After Shrek escapes however, he drops all the niceness and starts threatening their lives, never mind that ''he'' was the one that [[BerserkButton pushed Shrek too far]]. Specifically: the scene [[spoiler: where he summons a council of witches where he first starts out as a loving patron, scolds them about letting Shrek escape and finally ''snaps'' into rage, killing one of them on screen by pouring water onto her. [[ImMelting We all know what]] [[TheWonderfulWizardOfOz water does to witches...]] ]] That just doesn't mark him evil, but a batshit insane AxeCrazy.
* BadFuture: The premise.
* BigBad: Rumplestiltskin.
* BountyHunter: The Pied Piper.
* BrickJoke: Shrek says he's not going to eat Rumpelstiltskin because he "already had curly-toed weirdo for breakfast." [[spoiler:When Rumpel is finally caught, the ogres say that's exactly what they're having for breakfast.]]
* BrideAndSwitch: PlayedForLaughs during a montage in which Shrek dresses as a veiled bride at a man's wedding.
* BookEnds: [[WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}} The first film]] and this has the song "I'm a Believer" at the end.
* BoredomMontage: Shrek with repetitive family life near the start.
* BrokenBird: Fiona in the new timeline, as a result of Shrek not rescuing her, no longer believes in true love.
-->'''Fiona:''' True love didn't get me out of that tower, '''I did'''. I saved myself. Don't you get it? It's all just a big fairy tale!\\
'''Shrek:''' Fiona, don't say that, it does exist!\\
'''Fiona:''' And how would you know? Did you grow up locked away in a dragon's keep? Did you live all alone in a miserable tower? Did you cry yourself to sleep every night waiting for a true love that never came?
* BullyingADragon: When Shrek is captured by the witches and brought before him, Rumpelstiltskin proceeds to gloat about how he was conned--culminating in telling him his kids no longer exist. All Rumpelstiltskin accomplishes, though, is enraging Shrek to the point of breaking free and escaping.
* BunnyEarsLawyer: An evil variant in Rumpelstiltskin and his obsession with wigs.
* CallBack: When Shrek and Donkey are rushing to the dragon's keep to find Fiona, part of the wooden bridge breaks off when Donkey steps on it in a similar way to when it happened in the first movie. Donkey's shocked expression is exactly the same, too.
* CessationOfExistence: [[spoiler: Shrek made a [[DealWithTheDevil very bad deal with Rumpelstiltskin]] who as payment takes a single day from his life ([[NoOntologicalInertia the day he was born]]), now Shrek gets to be "[[LiteralGenie an ogre for a day]]", and when his day is over, ''so is he''.]]
* CheerfulChild: The dronkies and the ogre triplets.
* ChekhovsSkill: How to tie knots. ("The dragon goes under the bridge...")
* ChirpingCrickets: When Shrek meets Fiona for the first time in the alternate timeline and tries to tell her who he is, the story is so unbelievable that all the ogres are speechless, and crickets are heard chirping in the background.
* CrazyCatLady: One of the witches at the beginning.
* CreativeClosingCredits: [[spoiler:Characters and clips from the previous three films are put together in a sequence.]]
* CueTheFallingObject: After Shrek smashes the birthday cake and leaves the party, everyone stares in horror while Gingy's pastry chaps fall from his legs.
* CurseEscapeClause: All of Rumpelstiltskin's contracts have one of these, but he's smart enough to hide it [[spoiler: by making it so that you have to fold the contract a certain way in order to read it]]. In Shrek's case, it's a TrueLovesKiss
* DaddysGirl: Felicia seems to be especially close to Shrek. Finding her toy in his pocket and realizing she doesn't exist causes him to shed ManlyTears.
* DancePartyEnding: "I'm a Believer" returns to kick off the closing credits.
* DarkerAndEdgier: Somewhat, though to be fair the last two films had gotten progressively LighterAndFluffier.
* DoubleEntendre:
** At the beginning of the movie, Rumpelstiltskin tears out pages from a fairytale book in Pinocchio's bookstore. How will he pay? "Maybe we can make a deal for it, little boy." "Oh, I'm not a REAL boy!" Wait for it...wait for it..."...do you WANNA be?"
** "My donkey fell in your waffle hole."
* EmpathyDollShot: A varient occurs, where [[spoiler:Shrek finds his daughter's favorite doll apparently having fallen from one of his pockets]]. It has the same "Isolated doll" factor if the circumstances aren't identical to the norm.
* EveryoneHatesMimes: [[SarcasmMode "Oh great, after mimes, magicians are my favorite people."]]
* ExtremelyShortTimespan: Shrek terrorizes a village, finds out his entire life has been undone, gets captured and subsequently escapes, joins the resistance, etc. all in 24 hours.
* EstablishingCharacterMoment: Everything [[spoiler: from the start to the part where Rumpelstiltskin gets kicked out of Pinocchio's bookstore and wishes Shrek was never born is both this ''and'' backstory for him]].
* FaceDeathWithDignity: Shrek when it looks like his time has run out. Luckily, he's still saved.
-->'''Shrek:''' ''[to Fiona]'' You know what the best part of today was? I got the chance to fall in love with you all over again.
* FamilyMan: Shrek and Donkey have both become this. Shrek, to his chagrin at first, but later comes to appreciate it as he realizes how much his family and friends completed his life. Donkey loves it completely though. In the alternate universe, he's super excited to find out from Shrek that he's a father.
* FauxAffablyEvil: Rumpelstiltskin.
* FauxdianSlip:
-->'''Rumpelstilitskin:''' I don't know, any day. A day from your past. A day you had the flu? A day you lost a pet? A day some meddling oaf stuck his nose where it didn't belong destroying your business and ruining your life! ...Just for an example.
* FisherKing: Rumpelstiltskin's luxurious palace surrounded by the barren fields and run-down city. This is likely due to simple greed as opposed to a magical connection between the king and the land though.
* FromBadToWorse: Shrek starts to realize something is wrong when he finds a wanted poster with Fiona's face on it. It gets progressively worse from there.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Donkey yelling at Gingi, "What you talking about, cracker!?"
* GoodCostumeSwitch: [[spoiler:The Pied Piper wears white in the DancePartyEnding. Maybe he was only evil in Rumpel's world.]]
* GrandFinale: The movie was intended to act as "the final chapter" in the ''Shrek'' franchise, though recently there have been rumors about a fifth one in the works.
* ISurrenderSuckers: Shrek turns himself into Rumpel in order to get the loophole free wish that had been offered. He anticipated that he can't use it to break their contract, so he had a different wish in mind: setting the captured ogres free.
* IllBeYourBestFriend: Donkey says it to Shrek when trying to get him to do a birthday dance.
* InvoluntaryDance: The Pied Piper's flute has a dial that can be set to any known creature and makes them dance uncontrollably when he plays. The bounty hunter uses his flute to capture his quarry by forcing them to dance. He teaches some witches a lesson by forcing them to ''break dance''. Later he singlehandedly defeats the BadassArmy of Ogres with a full choreography and a conga line straight to Rumpelstiltskin's castle.
* ItsAWonderfulPlot: The film's plot can be neatly summed up as ''Film/ItsAWonderfulLife'' -- in the ''Shrek'' Universe.
* IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy: Once Shrek realizes he can't just simply make Fiona love him again, his priorities change to simply trying to save her from Rumpelstiltskin.
* KryptoniteFactor: The exit clause is hidden inside the contract, revealed not in the small print -- which at least some people would be smart enough to read, but by refolding the paper to reveal the hidden words (knowing Rumpelstiltskin's name as per the legend isn't enough, as ''everyone'' knows Rumpelstiltskin now he's king, so he had to get clever).
* LanternJawOfJustice: Brogan.
%%* LaResistance
* LoopholeAbuse: Rumpelstiltskin's specialty; his contract with Shrek is to trade a day from his life he won't remember in exchange for a consequence free day in an alternate timeline where he will be feared again so he can have fun terrorizing people and afterwards everything will go back to normal. The day in question turns out to be the day Shrek was born, and the alternate timeline is one where Shrek was never born; so instead of reverting back to the original timeline when the day ends, the timeline where Shrek was never born will become the real timeline and Shrek will cease to exist instead.
** In the opening it is revealed that in desperation, the king and queen had turned to Rumpelstiltskin to save Fiona from her curse. His deal to "make all their problems go away" in exchange for the crown to Far Far Away is interrupted by Shrek's actions in the first film. In the Shrek-less timeline they agree to the deal [[spoiler: and Rumpelstiltskin makes their problems go away by killing them.]]
* MagicCountdown: Rumpelstiltskin's sand timer, that measures the 'day' Shrek has before [[spoiler:he'll vanish away forever if he doesn't get love's true kiss]]. When it first appears, only a tiny bit of sand has fallen, even though [[spoiler:Shrek must have spent a good part of the day scaring villagers, getting captured, and being carried to Far Far Away.]]
* MagicallyBindingContract: Written by a malicious LiteralGenie. [[SchmuckBait Don't sign them]].
* ManipulativeBastard: Rumpelstiltskin.
* ManlyTears: Shrek sheds a manly tear when he saw one of his triplets doll when he was in the alternate reality and he knew they're not there at all. That is the first time we ever see Shrek cry.
* {{Metaphorgotten}}: Rumpelstiltskin makes a remark about how it's "time to pay the piper". Nothing happens. He then explains to one of the witches that he means ''literally'' pay, as he's a bounty hunter.
* MomentOfWeakness: What sets the plot in motion.
* TheMusicMeister: The Pied Piper is a bounty hunter who uses his flute to capture his quarry by forcing them to dance.
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Shrek spends much of the movie seeing how his inability to appreciate what he had effectively ruined the lives of Fiona, Donkey, Puss, and virtually everyone not named Rumpelstiltskin.
* NeverTrustATrailer:
** A commercial on TV (TV spot) makes it look like Donkey tries showing a trick where he shuts his eyes tight and they pop out through his nostrils. [[spoiler:He is actually at an ogre dinner, where they eat plates of eyeballs like fruit, and the trick he does actually doesn't involve his own eyes!]]
** Additionally, the song featured in the trailers ([[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68uWGunx3yQ Right Back Where We Started From]]) doesn't actually appear in the movie (though a version does play over the credits), and what is suggested to be a DisneyAcidSequence actually has an explanation.
** In one trailer "All By Myself" plays in the background while Puss is making cute eyes. While it was meant to be clear that this was added for the trailer, the song is used in other movies when a character is feeling sad, making it seem like it would be part of the movie.
** The first TV spots that showed in the UK almost made it seem that the fat kid at the party (named Butterpants) was a sort of main character, and also had the roar scene from the party shortened down to:
--->'''Butterpants:''' Do the roar!\\
'''Shrek:''' I'd rather not...\\
'''Butterpants:''' Do it!\\
'''Shrek:''' *Roars*
** There was a hint somewhere (the art book, maybe?) that Brogan would be Shrek's rival for Fiona's love, but that never happens. It's mentioned in one of the DVD features that he was originally going to be called [[SdrawkcabName Gnimrahc]] and was indeed planned to be a love interest for Fiona, but the idea was scrapped.
* NothingIsScarier: When Shrek bursts through the trunk of the tree that used to contain his home, only to find... nothing but a few scurrying rats. That's when you ''really'' get the feeling of "Oh, my God, what has happened to the world?"
* OhCrap:
** After enjoying his time as a scary ogre again, Shrek has a moment when he sees a wanted poster with Fiona's face on it.
** Donkey can only utter a scared "[[ThisIsGonnaSuck uh-oh]]" [[spoiler:after his attempt at wooing Dragon fails, right before he gets eaten. Fortunately, Puss promptly makes her spit him out.]]
* OrbitalKiss: Thoroughly subverted. The BigDamnKiss happens, with the camera orbit, colorful lights and everything, but then the [[CrapsackWorld world reverts to dark and bleak]].
* OrphanedPunchline: Shrek when riding in Rumpelstiltskin's carriage.
-->'''Shrek:''' And the centaur said, "That's not the half I'm talking about!"
* ParentalBonus: Try watching the movie again and you'll notice a lot of jokes you missed as a kid.
* {{Pun}}: Puss and Donkey manage to make a few.
-->'''Donkey:''' Man, you are a '''cat'''-astrophe!\\
'''Puss:''' And you are ri-'''donkey'''-lous! ''[{{beat}}; [[VitriolicBestBuds they both]] [[AwLookTheyReallyDoLoveEachOther start laughing]]]''
* RaceAgainstTheClock: If Shrek can't get TrueLovesKiss before the hourglass runs out, the changes become permanent, and he will cease to exist.
* RantInducingSlight: Shrek goes crazy from all the events going on at the triplets' birthday party.
* RealityEnsues: Invoked often, to the point where the ''entire movie'' is one for the series. Even in a literal fairy tale world, midlife crises happen. Idyllic marriages can become strained, especially when kids get involved. And no matter how hard you try, you can't just make someone fall for you on the spot.
* ResetButton: When Shrek and Fiona [[spoiler:share TrueLovesKiss just as Shrek is fading from existence, the alternate-universe shatters around Rumpelstiltskin as all of the people within it disappear. When Shrek returns to the prime-universe, he was seen mid-roaring at the birthday party.]]
* RunningGag: Perhaps it's a coincidence, but Rumpelstiltskin marks the ''third'' Shrek villain who is vertically challenged. [[spoiler:This carries into ''WesternAnimation/PussInBoots'' with Humpty Dumpty.]]
* SameSexTriplets: Subverted in that while two of Shrek and Fiona's triplets are male (Fergus and Farkle) they also have a girl (Felicia).
* SceneryGorn: The first view of the alternate-universe land of Far, Far Away-- which has been transformed from a Hollywood-like, beautiful (if commercialized) oasis into a desert wasteland with Rumpelstiltskin's palace at the center. The "Far Far Away" Hollywood sign is mostly destroyed, too.
* SchmuckBait: Donkey just after visiting the dragon's keep. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded by Shrek]].
-->'''Shrek:''' There's a stack of freshly made waffles in the middle of the forest! Don't you find that a wee bit suspicious?
* SeriesContinuityError:
** The Rumpelstiltskins in ''Third'' and ''Forever After'' are nothing alike. It's certainly not a SpeciesSurname either because (thanks to a huge ArtShift) they don't even look like the same species.
** The Pied Piper appears but for a second in a throwaway gag in the first film. Again... he looks nothing like how he does in the fourth film.
** In ''Shrek 2'', we can see it takes days to go from Duloc to Far Far Away. However in ''Forever After'', he travels [[TravelingAtTheSpeedOfPlot the same distance three times within less than a day]].
* ShoutOut:
** The witches are a cross between [[Film/TheWizardOfOz Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch of the West]] visually and the [[ComicBook/NormanOsborn Green Goblin]] in terms of fighting techniques.
** And Fiona for ''Comicbook/RedSonja'' and ''Series/XenaWarriorPrincess''.
** Rumpelstiltskin's meeting with the witches references the table scene from ''Film/TheUntouchables''.
** The ''Film/{{Deliverance}}'' banjo theme is heard while in the trailer- er, carriage park.
** A giant ball of shields from which all the warriors jump out and attack? Ending of ''Film/ThreeHundred'', anyone?
** A list of the books seen on the bookshelf where Shrek replaces the book ''Shrek'' at the end of the film:
--->''[[Theatre/TheTamingOfTheShrew The Taming of the Shrek]]''\\
''[[Literature/MobyDick Moby Shrek]]''\\
''[[Literature/LittleLordFauntleroy Little Lord Donkleroy]]''\\
''[[Literature/{{Cinderella}} Gingerella]]''\\
''[[Literature/TheUglyDuckling The Ugly Shreklings]]''\\
''[[Theatre/TheBarberOfSeville The Donkey of Seville]]''\\
''[[Theatre/AMidsummerNightsDream A Midsummer Night's Shrek]]''\\
''[[Literature/JackAndTheBeanstalk Shrek and the Beanstalk]]''\\
''[[Literature/TheIliad Fiona of Troy]]''
** Rumpelstiltskin jumping off of the balcony, only for it to be revealed he intentionally landed on a flying goose echos ''Film/BackToTheFuturePartII''.
* SuicideIsPainless: Rumpelstiltskin jumps backwards off the balcony when cornered by the ogre warriors while saying "Boooooo!", but then subverts it and lands on Fifi saying "So long!"
* SlapSlapKiss: Fiona only starts warming to Shrek when they bash each other up during combat training.
* StealthPun: That carriage park screams "Witch Trash".
* ThatPoorCat: Donkey startled Puss in Boots.
* ToothyBird: Rumpel's giant goose, Fifi.
* {{Tsundere}}: Fiona.
* TwoferTokenMinority: The Black[=/=]AmbiguouslyGay Ogre Cookie.
* VillainousBreakdown: Determined not to let Shrek reclaim Fiona's love for him and nullify Rumpel's contract, Rumpel becomes more and more enraged in his determination to keep the alternate timeline the dystopia it is. [[spoiler:When Shrek succeeds in reclaiming Fiona's true love's kiss, nullifying the contract, Rumpel starts begging for more time like a hysterical baby as his whole alternate reality disappears before his very eyes.]]
* WeWantOurJerkBack: The "jerk" here is the human race. The main theme of the first two movies is how badly Shrek is treated by humans. By the beginning of the fourth film, Shrek becomes annoyed at the humans treating him nicely and longs for the days when he would run about villages scaring them.
* WeaksauceWeakness: The witches [[Film/TheWizardOfOz dissolve in water]]. Oddly, the ogre resistance never takes advantage of this; it's just used by Rumpelstilskin in a YouHaveFailedMe moment.
* WhatTheHellHero: Fiona gives Shrek one during the kids' birthday party for not appreciating what he has.
* WoundedGazelleGambit: What Rumpelstiltskin uses to meet Shrek.
* WrongGenreSavvy: Rumpel thinks Shrek surrendered to get the loophole free wish and save himself, but Shrek had a much different idea in mind.