Published on: 26th May, 2011
Perry’s Previews Movie Review: Kung Fu Panda 2 – Po Finding Inner Peace
by Perry S. Chen May 26, 2011
Have you ever wondered why Po, the main character in the original Kung Fu Panda, and prophesied Dragon Warrior and protector of China had a father that was a goose? Well, in this hilarious action-packed sequel to Kung Fu Panda, you will definitely find out! Po discovers his origins in the new film while on a mission to save kung fu.
The new villain’s name is Lord Shen (my mom’s last name) who is a stunning albino peacock, skilled in kung fu and adaptable with many weapons such as blades, metal feathers, and a staff with a lethal metal talon on the end, but has not much need to use his skills due to his invention of the cannon, which renders the kung fu of an opponent useless…or does it?
Here is my review for CNN, produced by Chris Morrow:
This film is about finding destiny and inner peace. It’s better than the original film. I love the 2D cell animation that’s incorporated into the film instead of just 3D graphics. I especially liked the style in the film at the beginning that looked like traditional Chinese shadow puppets. I also thought that the interesting idea of a peacock as a villain was not ever used until this film. It is so creative! The music has a Chinese style which goes along well with scenes in the Chinese countryside. The voice cast is sold, expressing emotions of major characters well.
Director Jennifer Yuh Nelson is the first woman as sole director of a major animation feature. She is Korean American, who worked as head of story in the first Kung Fu Panda film at DreamWorks Animation. I remember seeing excellent animation shorts at the San Diego Asian Film Festival in 2010. A lot of animators in “Guard Dog Global Jam” (animation short directed by Oscar-nominee Bill Plympton that I participated as an animator) are Asian or women or both, it’s cool to have many talented Asian and women animators.
I give this film 4 starfish, it’s “Perrific!” For all of its strengths, Kung Fu Panda 2 has one flaw. At the very end, somebody that the main villain Lord Shen eradicated a long time ago mysteriously came back, and even though he was miles away, he miraculously knew that Po was alive!
I have a few personal favorite parts in the film. My favorite scene was when Master Shifu used inner peace and caught a drop of water without breaking it and set it on a leaf. I noticed that when Po was distracted, he let the villain get away, or got clobbered by a wolf, or other mishaps that don’t always end up good for Po himself.
I enjoyed meeting Po at the San Diego Zoo last month, he even posed for his portrait by a zoo artist! At the press screening, the audience LOVED the film! They cheered, laughed as the movie went along, and applauded at the end. I recommend this film to people age 5 and above, as small children could be scared of the battle scenes.
Moral: You cannot change the past, but you can choose what you become.
Copyright 2011 by Perry S. Chen
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Perry S. Chen is a 11-year-old award-winning film critic & artist, actor, TV/radio personality, Annie Awards for Animation presenter, TEDx speaker, filmmaker and animator. He writes about movies for San Diego’s largest newspaper, the Union Tribune with over 1 million readers. Perry is also the youngest columnist and entertainment critic for the San Diego Entertainer Magazine. He also blogs for Animation World Network, the leading animation industry publication, and is the resident film critic for Amazing Kids! with about 1 million readers.
Perry’s collaboration with Oscar-nominee Bill Plympton led to 2 animation shorts: “Guard Dog Global Jam” which won “Best Experimental Film” at ASIFA-EAST Animation Festival; and “Ingrid Pitt: Beyond the Forest” which will premiere at Comic-Con in July 2011.
http://www.perryspreviews.com/?p=2601 (Perry Chen at “Guard Dog Global Jam” LA premiere, New Media Film Festival, May 20, 2011)
http://www.perryspreviews.com/?p=15 (About Perry Chen)
Perry won the San Diego Press Club 2010 Excellence in Journalism Award, and is represented by Rebel Entertainment Partners, a talent agency in Hollywood; and Shamon Freitas Agency in San Diego.
Perry started writing movie reviews using his unique kids-friendly starfish rating system on his website (www.perryspreviews.com ) as an 8-year-old third grader at San Diego’s Torrey Hills Elementary School from the Del Mar Union School District.
Perry became a national sensation when he debuted on the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric in May 2009 as the youngest film critic in the country. He was featured on National Public Radio (NPR) with host Liane Hansen in March 2010, and has reviewed over 50 movies and DVDs on a multi-media platform: TV, radio, print, and web. He is the youngest member of the Asian American Journalist Association, the San Diego Press Club, and the youngest honoree of Cox Communication Channel 4’s annul Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.
Perry reviews films on a kids-friendly starfish rating system, 5 being the best. He was featured on “The Young Icons,” a nationally syndicated TV show on Nov 20, 2010, and on Variety as one of the most active young film critics in the country:
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