BY THOMAS WOOD
In 2008, DreamWorks animation created a film by the name of Kung Fu Panda. It was met with a resounding box office success, having blown its budget out of the water with profits. Wanting to capitalize on this success, DreamWorks began work on a sequel film, fittingly titled Kung Fu Panda 2. Could this movie ever live up to the success of its predecessor? Or would it fall flat and fail to meet the high expectations set by an eagerly awaiting audience? Let’s find out how good this movie really is.
Similar to the first film, the movie follows Po, a panda now accomplished in the martial arts of kung fu. Although Po is still generally as clumsy as he was in the first film, he’s surely developed as he’s now using his powerful movements to his advantage. Early into the movie, Po learns that a peacock ruler has used the gunpowder in firecrackers for weaponry, meaning that he must try and stop him. Po and his friends team up to track down and dispatch the peacock leader, meeting intense battles and friendly faces alike.
The plot of this movie is pretty solid, especially for a sequel film. It ties up many loose ends from the first film, which makes me think that a second film might’ve been planned from the get-go. This movie in particular does a fantastic job at humanizing Po, making the audience empathize for him as he finds out he’s adopted. However obvious this may have been to the audience– his adopted father is a goose– it still makes the audience feel bad for Po when he finds out. It’s especially heartbreaking when Po realizes his parents are likely dead as well, having been caught up in the wrath of the aforementioned peacock ruler.
The animation in this film is stellar. There is no good reason for early 2010’s animated fight scenes to look this amazing, but they blow me away every time. The way the animation is stylized works perfectly for the fights while staying nice and advertiser friendly for the kiddos. Even though I’m all grown up now, I’ll always see these fight scenes as the most epic showdowns of all time.
Overall, Kung Fu Panda 2 is an extremely solid film. Despite the stigma surrounding sequel films, this one has great plot, animation, and work from the actors, which makes for an amazing movie. This one is absolutely one I’d recommend anyone to watch or even rewatch– it’s even better when rewatching it for the first time since youth.
Categories: Entertainment, Opinion
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