Thursday, September 23, 2010

Kung Fu Panda (2008)

Stars :  Jack Black , Dustin Hoffman , Jackie Chan , Angelina Jolie , Ian McShane , Seth Rogen , Lucy Liu , David Cross , Randall Duk Kim , James Hong .

Directed By:John Stevenson ,Mark Osborne

Written By: Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger

In this decade with the advancement of technology there have been some amazing animation movies, with better animation , better story though the theme is still the same and high production values. Kung Fu Panda is an action packed comedy from the house of  DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc the studio that gave us some of the most memorable animation movie of all time such as Shrek, Madagascar and recently "How To Train Your Dragon". Kung Fu Panda i feel must be the first animation feature to be set in China and based on the ancient martial art of Kung Fu.

Its the story of a warrior so fierce that his opponents were blinded by over exposure to pure awesomeness. Its the story of the legendary giant Panda warrior who was so feared and loved that even the best in whole of China the Furious Five bowed in front of him. But as the furious five under the command of giant Panda were ready to face the army of 10000 devils from devil land a voice broke our Po's dream. Po (Jack Black ) a giant Panda is the son of a swan who owns a soup corner in the valley of Peace. Strange though but yes our Giant Panda was the son of a swan. Po dreams of being a Kung Fu master like his hero's the furious five. Master Tigress (Angelina Jolie), Master Crane (David Cross), Master Monkey (Jackie Chan), Master Viper (Lucy Liu ) and Master Mantis (Seth Rogen ) are the students of Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman ) a red Panda , who is a friend and student of Master Oogway(Randall Duk Kim) , the one who created the martial arts of Kung Fu. Oogway decides to select the Dragon Warrior coz he feels that Tai Lung  (Ian McShane) will soon return and only the Dragon Warrior could stop him. Tai Lung was the prodigy of Shifu, for whom Tai Lung was not just a student, Shifu brought him up like his son. Shifu trained Tai Lung day in day out , he wanted him to be the Dragon Warrior but when Shifu brought Tai Lung in front of Oogway as the Dragon Warrior, Oogway saw arrogance, evil and rage, so he denied him the dragon scroll. Oogway's denial turned the obedient student against his master and Tai Lung created havoc in the city but before he could take the dragon scroll he was neutrialized by Oogway and sent to prison for life. Po decides to go n watch the Dragon Warrior being selected by Oogway, he tries all the measures and as the last attempt he puts himself  in a chair and sets the attached fire crackers on fire. This does takes him up but as the crackers fuss out Po lands right in front of Oogway, who chooses him as the Dragon Warrior. Shifu is embarrassed and considers this to be an accident to which Oogway replies "there are no accidents my friend"  . This is the story of Po getting over his personal doubts to become a Dragon Warrior,  Shifu coming over his doubts about Po and making peace with his past and like every gorgeous animation making a very simple but true point that there is no secret ingredient, we just need to believe in something is special to make it special.

The usp of this movie are its characters, their characterization and closeness to real emotions on the animated faces.  Giant Panda are no doubt one of the cutest animals ever but i guess this Panda beats all from his clan as far as cuteness is a parameter.  A huge credit for the success of this movie goes to the animators at Pixar who have created awesome characters. Po is awesome and Jake Black deserves a  huge praise for his voice over. Its not just correct expressions but perfect, he makes the scenes more enjoyable by delivering every dialogue with perfect ease and charm. Whether its the initial excitement of learning Kung Fu or the huffing and puffing Dragon Warrior ready to face Tai Lung towards the end. There are innumerable instances of pure delight through out the movie,  specially the sweet innocent and enthusiastic childish expressions of Po whenever he  got something new to learn. Master Shifu the sweet, strict and amazing red Panda  voiced by the legendary Dustin Hoffman makes an impression not just on the movie but on its viewers. Master Shifu's relationship with Po is very honest and their interactions are the highlight. Everyone form Angelina Jolie, Jackie Chain, Lucy Liu  or even the almost mute Seth Rogan have done a commendable job, special praise for Jolie who has done a number of action packed movies and I feel though  Tigress is a fighter but Jolie had to lower her tone and never ever she is allowed to burst out.

The writers of the movie also deserve credit for turning a very simple story into a wonderful screenplay. Whats more worth mentioning are the action sequences of the movie, with some sequences being really high impact ones. As Po was lovable and cute, Tai Lung looked every bit a bad ass villain and the most ferocious fighter. Tai Lung's eyes could make any young child weep and be scared. The director duo has done an awesome job, through out the movie I never felt that the movie was being dragged or any sequence put in without purpose.

Kung Fu Panda is a highly enjoyable and fun movie. If one could remember Kung Fu Panda's moral then its much much better. Its definitely among the 10 best animation movies of the past 2 decades.

Plus : Superlative animation quality, brilliant performances.

Rating : 9/10

1 comment:

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- Norman