Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Kung Fu Panda 2 (Rhoades)

“Kung Fu Panda 2” Has the Right Moves

Reviewed by Shirrel Rhoades

Actor Jack Black looks like a chubby, cuddly Panda Bear – at least in “Kung Fu Panda 2.” Sure, it’s animated, but squint your eyes and you’d have a hard time telling the panda’s rounded profile from Black’s.

For those of you who didn’t see the original movie, Master Po (voiced by Black) is a Panda who (as the title suggests) knows kung fu, that chop-socky martial arts fighting style invented in China. This time around, Po and his pals – The Furious Five – are content to protect the Valley of Peace.

That is, until a new villain comes on the scene with a secret weapon that can defeat kung fu.
The Furious Five are a Tigress, Crane, Mantis, Viper and Monkey. These voices are reprised by the same actors from the original film: Angelina Jolie, David Cross, Seth Rogan, Lucy Liu, and Jackie Chan. Plus Dustin Hoffman, Michele Yeoh, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dennis Haysbert, Gary Oldman, and Danny McBride lend their voices too.

“Kung Fu Panda 2” – currently playing at the Tropic Cinema – was directed by Jennifer Yuh Nelson, herself of Asian ethnicity. It was filmed in poke-you-eye-out stereoscopic 3-D.

“I actually wanted to start off from the original and not lose anything good about it,” says Jennifer Yuh Nelson. “But also keep building on what we learned in the first one. In the first ‘Panda,’ Po got to be the Dragon Warrior. And he reached a certain level of happiness. In the second one we get to go to a larger scale adventure.”

“Po is like a big kid,” says Jack Black. “He has an awe and wonderment for his kung fu master heroes. He’s still sort of wide-eyed and innocent.”

Watching Jack Black talk about the movie, you’ll note his awe and wonderment. And wide-eyed innocence as he describes Po’s new adventures. Yep, Jack’s just a big, cuddly Panda in human form.
[from Solares Hill]

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