Thursday, 18 December 2014

Review : Kung Fu Panda


In the Valley of Peace, Po the Panda finds himself chosen as the Dragon Warrior despite the fact that he is obese and a complete novice at martial arts.

I'd like to take you back to 2008 when this film first came out, there was a time when this film was everywhere. And I mean everywhere. There was't a place you could go that didn't have a poster or a build board promoting this film and persuading people to go and see it.

This heavily promoted animated film, starring the electrifying and eccentric child fave Jack Black as the voice of the main character, Po. Has humor and a heartwarming, uplifting, fulfilling story which is not only appealing to children but grown-ups, too. 

The film tends to boost itself by focussing on positive messages about being who you are and believing in yourself, but with a martial arts-theme, so there is plenty to expect of fast-paced battle scenes with kicks, punches, falls, and all the rest, but it's all make believe or believed to be make believe action because it's animated.

It's the story about a lazy, irreverent slacker panda, named Po, who is the biggest fan of Kung Fu in the land, which doesn't exactly come in handy when it comes to helping his dad, serving noodles  at his noodle workshop. 

However, it is on a very special day that he is unexpectedly chosen to fulfill an ancient prophecy, Po's dreams to become a Kung Fu warrior have taken a turn in Po's favour without him knowing it, and in reality he joins the world of Kung Fu and studies alongside his idols, the legendary Furious Five : Tigress, Crane, Mantis, Viper and Monkey under the leadership of their guru, Master Shifu. 

But Po's destiny is a dangerous one, as the vengeful and furious snow leopard Tai Lung has escaped from a maximum security prison and is heading their way for revenge, and it's up to Po to defend the valley of peace from the oncoming threat. In order to do that, Shifu's importance to the story comes in as he is the character who is there to turn Po's dreams of becoming a Kung Fu master into a reality. Po puts his heart and his girth into the task, and the unlikely hero ultimately finds that his greatest weaknesses turns out to be his greatest strength. 

Here's a trailer.

I really like 'Kung Fu Panda' I've always liked it, as soon as I'd learned of it coming out I liked the sound of the film. I should say that the film is an absolute pleasure to watch, and Po has become an ideal animated incarnation of the engaging, Jack Black. He's wonderful as the character, giving Po the perfect mix of irreverence and sincerity. When he meets his idols, the Furious Five : Ferocious Tigress, Crane, Mantis, Viper, and Monkey, he's charmingly awestruck. 
To watch Po's progression of where he starts off from clumsy kung fu fan to master is a delight, and also gives children an example of the rewards of progress. If you try hard, you will receive the pay off of success. The underlined message here is that 'there's no secret to greatness besides faith in yourself' I find that to be very admirable and refreshing for the 21st century. 
There are many memorable quotes such as 'Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a mystery but today is a gift. That is why it is called The Present'. It's meaningful sayings like that which are valid points to make. Especially when educating children.
Overall, yeah. Really like this film. Very entertaining, and the cast are splendid. 8/10!
NEXT: Home Alone 2 - Lost in New York.

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