Shock's Movie Reviews - "Kung Fu Panda"
Here we go with another review.
While there have been many "animated" movies I've seen that I've thoroughly enjoyed ("Ice Age", "Toy Story" to name a couple), I don't NORMALLY go to see kid's movies (no kids). So, when I decided to go see "Kung Fu Panda", I wasn't sure what to expect.
Let me say I was pleasantly surprised. I find Jack Black (who voiced the main character, Po) to be a funny guy on screen, and I have to say he did an exemplary job voicing the panda in the movie, Po. He seemed to have the right mix of goof-offishness and sincerity in his voice to play the character just right.
The story is basically as follows: Po, played by Black, is a chubby (OK, overweight) panda who seems to think he is stuck working in his father's soup restaurant for the rest of his life. He dreams of being a kung fu master someday, but his father wants him to take over the family business. The mountain village he lives in is protected by Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman) and the Furious Five (Master Monkey, voiced by Jackie Chan; Master Viper, Lucy Liu; Master Tigress, Angelina Jolie; Master Mantis, Seth Rogen and Master Crane, David Cross). Unexpectedly chosen to fulfill an ancient prophecy, Po is reluctantly trained by Master Shifu alongside the Furious Five.
Eventually, it's up to Po to defend everyone from Tai Lung, a snow leopard (Ian McShane) who has escaped from prison and is coming to take revenge for the wrongs he feels have been done to him.
There are several good things about this movie - it's short enough (95 minutes) that kids won't be bored (I was at the movie with several younger kids and they were laughing hysterically, and I found myself laughing right alongside them!), it's entertaining (even for adults), and the animation is excellent. Not cartoonish, as it could have been, but nicely drawn (Po is chubby but lovable), with bright visuals and good color.
And Jack Black is a riot as the clumsy but gentle Po. And the story has a good message - you can be who you want to be in life, just be yourself.
Overall, a very entertaining time at the movies.
PPO Ambassador, Defender of the Purple Faith and Guardian of the Gates of Valhalla