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Kung Fu Panda (Widescreen Edition)
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Enthusiastic; big and a little clumsy; Po is the biggest fan of Kung Fu around... which doesnat exactly come in handy while working every day in his familyas noodle shop. Unexpectedly chosen to fulfill an ancient prophecy; Poas dreams become reality when he joins the world of Kung Fu and studies alongside his idols; the legendary Furious FiveaTigress; Crane; Mantis; Viper and Monkeyaunder the leadership of their guru; Master Shifu. But before they know it; the vengeful and treacherous snow leopard Tai Lung is headed their way; and itas up to Po to defend everyone from the oncoming threat. Can he turn his dreams of becoming a Kung Fu master into reality? Po puts his heart - and his girth - into the task; and the unlikely hero ultimately finds that his greatest weaknesses turn out to be his greatest strengths.
What's a panda to do when his dreams of kung-fu awesomeness awake to the cold reality of noodle-making? Clumsy, overweight Po (Jack Black) dreams of becoming a kung fu master like China's revered "furious five," but instead seems destined to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather in the restaurant business. When great leader Oogway has a vision that the imprisoned kung fu warrior Tai Lung (Ian McShane) will soon escape, he declares it time to choose China's dragon warrior--one kung fu master deemed worthy of possessing the dragon's scroll and its secret to limitless power. Po and all the townspeople rush to the Jade Palace atop the highest mountain to witness the contest between Tigress (Angelina Jolie), Monkey (Jackie Chan), Mantis (Seth Rogan), Crane (David Cross) and Viper (Lucy Liu), but Po is locked outside the palace. After a miracle of sorts, Po lands inside the palace gates, where he is chosen as the dragon warrior and placed under the tutelage of the decidedly non-plussed master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman). An unconventional student to say the least, hilarity reigns as Shifu tries desperately to make Po into some semblance of a kung fu warrior. Can Po possibly fulfill his destiny as dragon warrior, or was Oogway's final decision a critical mistake? A film rich with hilarious moments, superior animation, and an important message about believing in oneself and the power that comes from within, Kung Fu Panda is great entertainment that will have the whole family laughing and begging for more. (Ages 3 and older) --Tami Horiuchi
Stills from Kung Fu Panda (Click for larger image)
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Top customer reviews
Now I went on my iPad and did all the steps and hit play and said it was invalid. What!?
BUT then I realized you need AMAZON APP in order to watch. So the app is free and then boom. Problem solved.
So for people bashing this, try downloading the app and see if it helps. Worked for me.
I was pleasantly surprised. I found a colorful garden where I half expected a bog. Lush watercolor visuals and fun characters instead of flat animation and bland storytelling. A few kids will certainly come out of the theater itching to try out some of the roundhouse kicking, panda-belly-bouncing bedlam they've seen onscreen, but if the little roughhousing rascals a colleague of mine saw after the film are any indication, the moves they'll try are going to be of the friendly variety, not headlocks and punches. Previously stated spirituality is definitely present, but it's as spare as a martial arts cartoon set in ancient China will reasonably allow. And the humor runs clear and fresh.
In the film's production notes, co-director Mark Osborne had this to say: "It was important to all of us, from the start, that Kung Fu Panda would have a theme, a positive message that we really believed in. We wanted it to be a fun experience loaded with comedy and great action. But we also wanted there to be a takeaway that we all believed was a good one."
To that end, the story projects a well-worn "Follow your heart and believe in yourself" theme. But it also encourages finding your own strengths, being disciplined, learning from those who are older and wiser, protecting the innocent and standing up for what's right even when you're afraid you might fail.
Oh, yeah. There's one more thing this film encourages: hordes of cuddly stuffed animals forever frozen in kung fu pose.
It was a mix of old kung fu movie nostalgia, The Matrix fight scene choreography, awesome animation, and the humor of Jack Black. A winning combination and I hope they do a sequel because I could have watched this all day.
The movie has a great story that keeps you you in anticipation, is paced very well, and while you know how this movie will end it is still surprising and pays off in a big way.
And, then, a momentous day, a game-changing day! Time has come to choose, from the masses, the mighty Dragon Warrior - him what's destined to open the dragon scroll and so obtain the secrets of the universe and fulfill an ancient prophecy. Well! Po, giddy fan boy, cannot miss out on such a pivotal martial arts spectacle. He attends on the pretense told his goose dad that he's gonna sell noodly goods.
There has to be dramatic conflict, and it comes two-fold. More immediate is the tense interplay between Po and his reluctant martial arts instructor, his sifu, him what can't believe fate had chosen as the Dragon Warrior a fat, bungling, graceless, dumpling-scarfing panda. Lurking initially in the backdrop is the sub-plot of the malevolent snow leopard Tai Lung (Ian McShane), held in torturous confinement these past twenty years, but not for much longer. Some background on the big bad: Tai Lung, martial artist supreme, harbors a seething mad-on for his teacher. See, Tai Lung had considered himself the ideal candidate to be the Dragon Warrior. His teacher begged to differ. D'you ken how Tai Lung and Po's paths converge?
Kung Fu Panda showed out in 2008 and, eight years later, its life lessons still apply. A type of gentle humor abounds; it'll tickle the young uns' fancy and amuse the wrinklier persons. Po is the centerpiece, and he' so cute and affable, and an ungainly panda learning kung fu is simply a delightful conceit. Someone smartly reined in Black's excesses, and so what we get is voiceover work that integrates well with the visuals. Po consistently exhibits this disarming sense of wonder and of discovery, and this goes a long way into making him so rootable. But he's not the only attraction. It's a cavalcade of celebrity voices, with Angelina Jolie (Tigress), Jackie Chan (Monkey), Dustin Hoffman (Sifu), Lucy Liu (Viper), David Cross (Crane), and Seth Rogen (Mantis) adroitly filling up the spaces around Black.
Don't sleep on the action beats for they are dope, flawlessly rendered by wicked good CG animation. The martial arts sequences are handled with dynamic choreography and strewn with deft comic flourishes. At one point I was rendered giddy by a dizzyingly staged training skirmish between Po and his sifu waged with chopsticks and keying in on one lone surviving dumpling. I wager to brag that that scene qualifies as one of the most inspired sequences in martial arts cinema, let alone in cartoondom. And the life lessons I touched on earlier? I love it when movies don't serve up their messages in heavy-handed fashion. Kids will organically pick up on what this movie imparts: the importance of self-worth, that ain't no secret to greatness besides faith in oneself. Who needs a dumb dragon scroll?
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