Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Film Review: "Kung Fu Panda 3" (2016).

"You must rediscover what it is to be a panda!"
This quote is at the heart of Kung Fu Panda 3. This computer-animated action comedy martial arts film, directed by Jennifer Yuh Nelson and Alessandro Carloni and produced by DreamWorks Animation and Oriental DreamWorks. It is a sequel to the 2011 film Kung Fu Panda 2 and the third instalment in the Kung Fu Panda franchise. 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.

In 2010, DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg announced that the Kung Fu Panda franchise was planned to have six movies, or "chapters", and that the threequel will not be the last movie in the franchise. In July 2012, Kung Fu Panda 3 was officially confirmed by Bill Damaschke, DWA's chief creative officer. This has been the longest wait for a sequel to a previous Dreamworks computer-animated film to date. The film was made as a co-production between DreamWorks Animation and Oriental DreamWorks, a Shanghai-based studio, founded in 2012 as a partnership between DreamWorks Animation and Chinese companies. This was the first time that any major American animated feature film had been co-produced with a Chinese firm. One third of the film was made in China, and the rest in the United States, at DWA. In April 2013, DreamWorks Animation announced that Rebel Wilson, Bryan Cranston, and Mads Mikkelsen had joined the cast of the film. By April 2015, J.K. Simmons had replaced Mikkelsen, whose character had been rewritten. Five months later, Wilson was replaced by Kate Hudson due to an extended production schedule. The studio had to reanimate previously completed scenes to reflect Hudson's interpretation of the character.

The film features the voices of Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, J. K. Simmons, Jackie Chan, Lucy Liu, Seth Rogen, David Cross, Bryan Cranston, Kate Hudson, James Hong, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Randall Duk Kim. The cast once again gave yet another round of spectacular performances. With Black, this time, more in centre bringing the "awesomeness". While Cranston and Hudson and Simmons bring their flare to the mix.

The storyline arc may seem again tad familiar to fans of the previous two instalments, but Kung Fu Panda 3 once again offers enough action, comedy, and visual sparkle to compensate. It is a worthy third chapter that gets an extra kick from the addition of dynamic 3D fight sequences. The movie is superior to the two and works as an ambitious extension of the previous story. It effectively probes even deeper into Po's emerging hero's journey and personal issues, evoking a truly fulfilling Campbellian archetype, but also remains fully viable as mainstream entertainment suitable for all ages. It is truly beautiful to behold and it works on both aesthetic and emotional levels.

Simon says Kung Fu Panda 3 receives:

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