Kung Fu Panda

Kung Fu Panda

In Theatres: 
Jun 06, 2008
Running Time: 
1 Hour, 31 Minutes

When legendary villain Tai Lung is prophesied to escape from his mountain prison Kung Fu Master Oogway must choose the next Dragon Warrior whose destiny it is to stop him before he reaches the mysterious and legendary Dragon Scroll.  The scroll is said to grant its reader limitless power. Of course, no one expected Oogway to choose Po, the fattest laziest Panda in the entire valley to become the next Dragon Warrior, that even includes Po himself. Can Po really defeat Tai Lung and fulfill his destiny as the Dragon Warrior? Will he be defeated by Tai Lung or worse, will Po defeat himself?

Right off the bat I have to say that this film is strictly formula. Dreamworks offers up yet another animated film with talking animals who look to find their place in the scheme of things. Now even though its story has been done to death Kung Fu Panda goes down in my book as the greatest animated kids film of the year so far and the reason is delivery. Jack Black is excellent for his part as Po the lazy Panda and directors Mark Osborne and John Stevenson help guide Po’s every movement into perfect harmony with Black’s dialogue. As much as I want to say the film was loaded with star power the film really belongs to Jack Black and Dustin Hoffman (Hoffman plays Kung Fu Master and Trainer Shifu). While the other stars including Angelina Jolie, David Cross, Seth Rogan, Lucy Lu, and Jackie Chan have roles in the film their characters only stand out due to the recognizable familiarity of their voices. Their characters do not play a huge part in the film. Ian McShane who I always welcome as a villain has the perfect voice for the job to give his character that added venom. Kudos’ for casting him in the film.

Audiences will love the humor, the drama and the action in Kung Fu Panda. Surprisingly the dialogue and story are sophisticated and have a strong emotional presence for an animated kids film. I’ve never seen an American animated film for kids have so many emotional ups and downs in it, again owed all to delivery. So, pack your kids up if you’ve got them and go see Kung Fu Panda because the general admission price is worth every penny. If you haven’t got kids don’t worry, this film is excellent enough for anybody, especially you martial arts fans. I highly suggest Kung Fu Panda.

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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