Posts Tagged 'seth rogen'

Wick-Quoting #44: Kung Fu Panda 2

“My son saved China – you, too, can save! Buy one dumpling, get one free!”

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Kung Fu Panda 2 is the other sequel that came out on May 26 (along with The Hangover Part II).  The main difference between the two is that Kung Fu Panda 2 acts like a proper sequel – it builds from the previous movie and presents a new challenge while getting deeper into the development of the characters.  Through the conflict, Po (Jack Black) ends up learning about his past and his real family.

The panda returns!

While the story is a bit cliche (defeat the enemy who is jeopardizing lives and kung fu), the action makes up plenty for it.  Considering it is an animated movie based around kung fu, you can’t expect anything less.  Po and the Furious Five bust out some interesting and new moves.

The gang's all here

The film does have a touchy side to it when Po’s past is shown of how he came to be Mr. Ping’s (James Hong) son.  When Po as a baby panda was shown, a wave of “awww” traveled across the theater.  Along with James Hong, plenty of other famous actors took part in the making of Kung Fu Panda 2, including returning voice actors, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Jackie Chan, and Seth Rogen, along with new additions such as Gary Oldman, who voices Shen, the evil Peacock.  Gary Oldman surprises me considering all the various roles he has taken, like Sirius Black from the Harry Potter series and Jim Gordon from the recent Batman trilogy.  He reminds me a bit of one of my favorite actors, Hugo Weaving, who has had unique roles in The Matrix, Lord of the Rings, and Transformer series as well as his performance as V.  Apparently he is The Red Skull in the new Captain America movie and is returning as Elrond in the new Hobbits movies.

Awww

Hugo Weaving aside, Kung Fu Panda 2 is as good as it gets when it comes to a family, action movie.  The ending of the film, however, is very similar to the whole idea of Shaolin Soccer, but I guess that comes with the kung fu territory.  Even though the movie has an obvious plot, it is still a good watch, especially for children and families.  My only concern for this series now is that DreamWorks will commit and overkill and release three more sequels later on (like how they did for Shrek).

7.8

Quoted by MWP

Sawazz – I thought the action and comedy were great, above average, but the ending feels like such a rip-off of Stephen Chow’s Shaolin Soccer! – 7.6

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Wick-Quoting #34: Kung Fu Panda

This animated feature film did very well back in 2008, making over 630 million worldwide.  It’s no wonder a sequel will be released later this year.  What made this move so successful?  For starters, it has a collection of well known actors involved.

The voices of the characters match pretty well

The cast includes Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Jackie Chan, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, and Ian McShane.  Each voice actor matches his/her character fairly well.  It even seems like most of the characters were designed to resemble their respective voice actors (the similarity between Jack Black and Po the panda is striking).  Dustin Hoffman connects very well with his character, Shifu, mainly because just like Shifi, Hoffman is a master – a master at acting.  Therefore, his character commands a similar amount of respect.

The dragon scroll

Unlike other films from DreamWorks, Kung Fu Panda lacks in pop songs and celebrity references, which are common in media for children in order to draw in adult audiences (such as Katy Perry in Sesame Street).  Even though the movie is considered to be for children, it still can entertain adult audiences as well with its engaging characters and unique idea.  In fact, the inclusion of such outside references of songs and celebrities would have only hindered the movie as a spoof instead of an original comedy.

FOOD!

On December 2010, DreamWorks Animation announced that there will be a total of SIX films in the Kung Fu Panda series.  Are they fucking serious?  That’s more than Shrek (even considering the sequel starring Puss in Boots).  Of course, this is DreamWorks that we are talking about, so it is only natural for successful franchises to be dragged out a lot longer than they should be.  Hopefully this franchise won’t go past the third installment.

A duck making food? What does the tiger eat?

Enjoy the movie before DreamWorks overdoses in panda fever.

8.1

Quoted by MWP

Wick-Quoting #31: The Green Hornet (2011)

“Let’s roll, Kato!”

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The Green Hornet is a pretty surprising movie for a variety of reasons, all in unexpectedly enjoyable ways.  To begin with, I had never heard of The Green Hornet before hearing of this film.  The Green Lantern, sure, but… Hornet?  New to me.  Here’s another surprising tidbit of news: prominent Taiwanese pop star Jay Chou (Kato) co-stars in this film alongside Seth Rogen (Britt Reid).  And he does a great job.  To those of you unversed in Asian pop music, Jay Chou is one of Asia’s biggest names.  He has a long and very accomplished career backing him up, and although I honestly do not know if any acting is on his resume, that doesn’t really matter because Jay Chou does a fine job with a great character.  By the way, yes, his English is perfectly understandable, and I do also have to add that he looks great in a suit.  (Don’t worry, that has no effect upon the objectivity of this review.)

An interesting choice of actors

The Green Hornet takes a few superhero related ideas that have been done before, i.e. powerless normal human being decides he wants to try his hand at being a hero, and rich kid with a lot of money and thus powerful technology uses all this to fight the bad guys.  However, The Green Hornet takes those ideas and gives them a very comedic and light hearted spin.  One liners are all over the place in this film and for the most part they’re very funny.  The villain, Chudnovsky (otherwise known as BLOODnovsky!), is played by Christopher Waltz, villain of Quentin Tarantino’s film Inglorious Basterds, and after hearing that fact you should already know that yes, the villain is awesome.  A hilarious badass with image issues and a double barrel gun – Waltz’s charm and unique touch as a villain is all over this character and the film definitely would not be what it is without him.  Additionally, even Cameron Diaz as the somewhat unconventional love interest does a great job.  Overall, this film bucks the traditions followed by most superhero movies with awesome results.

An interesting gun

Just to sum up, if any of you reading this couldn’t tell by now I really enjoyed the movie.  It greatly surpassed my expectations and although it is by no means perfect – for example, there are a few scenes between Britt and Kato that drag a bit despite the comedic sparks between the pair, and which might be spoiler-ish to disclose here – I highly recommend it.  For those of you interested in the roles of Asians in mainstream Hollywood (aka those of you who probably shunned The Last Airbender), I am sure you’ll find a lot to applaud in The Green Hornet as the thoroughly-Asian Kato gets a lot of great scenes and lines that rival those of the film’s star Britt Reid himself.  Overall, go give The Green Hornet a chance, and you may find yourself pleasantly surprised.

An interesting scene

8.6

Quoted by Sawazz

MWP: 7.7


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