Kung Fu Panda (2008)

Kung Fu Panda (2008)

Director: Mark Osborne, John Stevenson
Starring: Jack Black, Ian McShane, Angelina Jolie

A noodle vendor obsessed with kung fu is selected as the unlikely candidate to become the legendary Dragon Warrior.

This is one of my favorite Dreamworks animated films. The sequel has a little more emotional depth, but this one is a rather layered story that satisfies children and adults both. There is plenty of humor but also some amazing fight choreography. Tai Lung's prison break in particular stands out as a rather stunning set piece. Speaking of Tai Lung, he's an amazing villain. Even after several script rewrites to make him less sympathetic, he's still fairly sympathetic and I actually like that about him. Being played by Ian McShane doesn't hurt either. Jack Black is a perfect fit for the character of Po and Dustin Hoffman also does very well in the role of Shifu. Some people complain that Jackie Chan is criminally underutilized as Monkey, so it becomes a bit of a joke among fans how few lines he gets. This is a fine film and well worth seeing if not adding it to your collection.

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