Puss In Boots Reviews Are In, Best Of The Shrek Franchise?

Puss In Boots, coming out after 10 years of development, is a critical hit and an audience pleaser, marking a new high-water mark for the Shrek franchise.

By Douglas Helm | Published

Antonio Banderas movie

The reviews are in for Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and it looks like we might just have the best movie in the Shrek franchise yet. Critics are going crazy for the sequel, which currently has an impressive 97% on Rotten Tomatoes. Christy Lemire from RobertEbert.com gave the film a three out of four, saying “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish is as spry and light on its feet as its titular feline.”

Critic Richard Crouse had extremely high praise for the film, comparing it to the similarly acclaimed Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio and saying “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish treads into adult territory theme wise, with higher stakes than we’re used to in a film aimed at kids,” adding “but does so with family audiences in mind.” It seems like the film is one of those rare instances where adults will just be as invested as their kids, if not more so. If any parents were hesitating to bring their kids to this one, reviews like this should certainly squash their concerns.

According to the critics, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish has more going for it than just stunning animation and a great story, as the performances of the A-list cast are also getting a lot of attention. Johnny Oleksinski from the New York Post praised the lead performance from Antonio Banderas, saying “The No. 1 reason to watch, though, is Banderas’ top-notch voice performance.” Oleksinski gave the film an impressive three out of four and added that other A-listers could get the same results as Banderas if they “treated their animated film roles as more than a pet project.”

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish sees the titular Puss in Boots seeking out a mythical wish after he learns he’s burned through eight of his nine lives during his past adventures. Antonio Banderas returns as Puss with Salma Hayek returning as Kitty Softpaws. The rest of the cast is rounded out by Harvey Guillen as Perro the dog, Florence Pugh as Goldilocks, John Mulaney as Jack Horner, Wagner Moura as the Big Bad Wolf, Ray Winstone as Papa Bear, Samson Kayo as Baby Bear, Olivia Colman as Mama Bear, and Da’Vine Joy Randolph as Mama Luna.

Kitty Softpaws (Salma Hayek) and Puss in Boots (Antonio Banderas)

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish has been a long time in the making, with Guillermo del Toro getting the ball rolling for a sequel way back in 2012. Several drafts of the screenplay were reportedly submitted and the film eventually got the title Puss in Boots 2: Nine Lives & 40 Thieves in 2014. Development on the sequel went quiet until Illumination founder and CEO Chris Meledandri was brought on board as an executive producer in 2018.

Finally, the title was changed to Puss in Boots: The Last Wish in 2020, and Joel Crawford was tapped in 2021 to direct the film with Januel Mercado brought on as co-director. Paul Fisher was brought on to handle the screenplay with a story by Tommy Swerdlow and Tom Wheeler. The first Puss in Boots film was released in 2011, so it took over a decade to make it happen.

With all the delays and waiting, there was always a chance the film wouldn’t live up to expectations and would underperform. Fortunately, it seems those concerns can be put to rest, and parents and kids alike can expect a thrilling and poignant return to Shrek’s alternate fairytale universe. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish is now playing in theaters if you want to check it out for yourself.