Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Review: Kung Fu Panda 2 (The Kaboom of Doom?)

Rarely do sequels come close to being as good as, or even surpass, the original. Now, I wouldn't go so far as to say that Kung Fu Panda 2 is better than the first; regardless, it is still a good movie.

The Dragon Warrior is back in action in Dreamworks' follow-up to their 2008 smash hit. This time Po finds himself struggling with once faded memories about his painful seperation with his biological parents while, at the same time, trying to save China from the world's first WMDs.

I know you've probably heard it from many other critics, but the voice acting in this film is terrific. Jack Black leads a talented voice cast made up of big names like Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie, Seth Rogen, Jackie Chan, and Gary Oldman, who plays Lord Shen, a power hungry peacock bent on reclaiming the throne his father once promised him.

It is up to Po and the rest of the Furious Five to stop Shen and destroy his multitude of powerful cannons in order to save China and the Kung Fu lifestyle. They go about doing this through beautiful animation and one nicely stylized fight sequence after another. I have yet to see it in 3D so I cannot comment on that just yet.

Aside from the large amount of talent and , this movie is flat out enjoyable because it is easy to become emotionally connected with these characters; either I was laughing at the jokes, with the characters, or I was feeling their pain. At all times I felt invested in what was going on and it made the hour-and-a-half runtime fly by.

This movie owes its success to its large heart and its ability to take already lovable characters, mix in some great new ones, and blend it all into one great, heart-tugging animated flick.

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