Cinema Mishmash

A personal and random look at movies, past and present

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Kung Fu Panda

May 3rd, 2009 · No Comments

Despite the fact that its title seems more like the synopsis of the studio pitch meeting that okayed the project (“It’s got kung fu! It’s got a panda! We think we can get Jack Black!”), Kung Fu Panda is a solidly middle-of-the-road animated feature that parents can happily let their children embrace. While it might not be necessary for an animated film to have overt life lessons, the ones here are worthwhile as much as they are communicated without any subtlety. Po (voiced by Black) is the panda son of a line of geese (this is never explained) and whose destiny is to run the family noodle shop. kungfupandaThrough improbable circumstance he is chosen by the possibly senile turtle kung fu master to be the region’s greatest warrior, despite Po’s utter lack of training, skill, and self-esteem. If he’s going to rise to meet the challenges that face him, he’s going to have to . . . okay, you know where all of this is going. But along the way there are some laughs for the adults, some visually stimulating martial arts sequences, and Seth Rogan playing an insect. And if kids pick up an idea or two about looking inward to meet their own challenges, then perhaps Kung Fu Panda actually does walk on the rice paper without leaving a mark.

Tags: Action/Adventure · Animation · Capsule · Comedy · Family

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