This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.
This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.
Movie Review: Kung Fu Panda
You know, I didn't have very high expectations going in to see Kung Fu Panda. I expected a lot of slapstick, pop-culture jokes, and a lot of smart-ass remarks from Jack Black's panda character. I had no expectations for any real, exciting, actual Kung Fu action.
This time, I'm so glad I was wrong.
First of all, the action sequences are inventive and intense. Better still, it had a great sense of danger and fun, with some great camera work that could only be done in CGI to enhance the action. I could see that some sequences could be a little too violent for the little ones, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. How come no one had done CGI Martial Arts movies before? It's such a great combination.
The humor and action both parodied and paid tribute to the long history of Chinese Martial Arts movies. There was a lot of physical comedy, and the fat panda jokes did keep coming. But they were clever and funny most of the time and the humor remained very good natured and likable. There is just something undeniably funny about a big fat panda doing kung fu, and one particular shot in the final fight sequence that was so brutally funny that I kept laughing all the way into the next joke.
Jack Black was doing his usual schtick, of course, but it wasn't over the top. His voice work fit perfectly in the film and so did everyone else's. Actually, that's one thing I really want to mention. There were some big name actors lending their voices to this movie, but they all did a very good job blending into their character. Dreamworks / Paramount did not market this movie on the big stars they got in this film, and I was very happy to not be distracted trying to figure out who did whose voice during the movie.
Overall it was a thoroughly entertaining movie, the action was a ton of fun and it got big laughs from the audience and me throughout the movie. I'd also venture as far to say that unless you were born to hate kung fu movies or if for some reason you can't stand Jack Black's work, you'd have a great time.
Kung Fu Panda opens June 6.
Photos courtesy of Paramount Pictures.
Donald Trump was a fading TV presence when the WGA strike put a dent in network schedules.
Pickets are being held outside at movie and TV studios across the city
For some critics, this feels less like a momentous departure and more like a footnote.
Disneyland's famous "Fantasmic!" show came to a sudden end when its 45-foot animatronic dragon — Maleficent — burst into flames.
Leads Ali Wong and Steven Yeun issue a joint statement along with show creator Lee Sung Jin.
Every two years, Desert X presents site-specific outdoor installations throughout the Coachella Valley. Two Los Angeles artists have new work on display.