Film Review by Clayton Barnett
Kung Fu Panda 3
When Po's long-lost panda father suddenly reappears, the reunited duo travels to a secret panda paradise to meet scores of hilarious new panda characters. But when the supernatural villain Kai begins to sweep across China defeating all the kung fu masters, Po must do the impossible-learn to train a village full of his fun-loving, clumsy brethren to become the ultimate band of Kung Fu Pandas.
It’s more pandamonium as Po and the Furious Five return for more awesome adventure and hilarious antics.
Dreamworks have kept things simple for the mega-successful Kung Fu Panda series (two movies and a cartoon now) and number three continues the perfect mix of slapstick gags, thrilling (but not too scary) 3-D action, and a nice feel good message to finish. My three girl cousins – aged 5, 7 and 9 – lapped it all up and had a blast.
Kung Fu Panda 2 director Jennifer Yuh is back (co-piloting this time with Alessandro Carloni), along with the writers of the first two instalments who continue the welcome assortment of puns and jokes to keep the adults amused.
There’s a lot to keep young and old hooked, the gorgeous animation itself is stunning to watch, especially the calligraphy-styled illustrated sequences that explain Po’s panda origins.
Plus just check out the high-calibre voice cast – Jack Black, Bryan Cranston, Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie, Seth Rogen, Lucy Lui, J.K. Simmons and Kate Hudson. Cranston is a great addition as Po’s dad, their first bonding moment in the hall of heroes is funny stuff. And after J.K. “That’s not my tempo” Simmons villainous role in Whiplash he’s just perfect as supernatural bad-guy Kai.
Interestingly enough the third chapter is a little more spiritual than previous ones focusing on the ‘chi’ we strive to master. And the whole movie started and finished off in the spirit realm, which all seemed perfectly fine for my young guests. The finale seemed reasonably final but there are three more Panda films planned.
Po and co return and kick ass in Kung Fu Panda 3, with an entertaining mix of slapstick, thrilling action and stunning animation. If the kid’s loved the first two don’t worry about getting dragged to the third, you’ll enjoy just as much as them.
Releases: 24th March 2016
Rating: M – Low Level VIolence
Duration: 95 minutes
Starring: Jack Black, Bryan Cranston, Dustin Hoffman
Director: Alessandro Carloni, Jennifer Yuh
The film was originally scheduled for December 23, 2015 but the studio delayed to avoid directly competing with Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015).
Four of Angelina Jolie's children, Shiloh Jolie-Pitt, Pax Jolie-Pitt, Knox Jolie-Pitt and Zahara Jolie Pitt, are voice extras in the scene when Po talks to the pandas about a game plan.
Jackie Chan is the only actor to be voicing 2 different characters in the film's English release (as Monkey) and Mandarin release (as Li/Po's birth father).
The CEO of Dreamworks confirmed that this is not the last movie in the franchise and that 3 Kung Fu Panda films are planned ahead.
This has been the longest wait for a sequel to a previous Dreamworks computer-animated film to date.
During the traveling Montage Po and his father endure on their way to the secret panda village, they pass by two large stones that sit on a equally stone like terrain and are slanted toward the right of the screen. Shrek and Donkey pass by these same stones on their way to
Fionas castle in the first Shrek movie.
This is the first time that any major American animated feature film has been co-produced with a Chinese firm.