AN ALL-STAR cast including Jack Black, Bryan Cranston, Dustin Hoffman and Angelina Jolie, lend their voices to “Kung Fu Panda 3.”
And when any movie comes with a number 3 after it, run for the hills!
Which is what I wanted to do having to be forced to sit through this miserable excuse of an animated “movie,” the slowest, most excruciating 95 minutes of my life.
If you watched the original “Kung Fu Panda” adventure, it truly was something marvelous as an oversized panda named Po (Black), estranged from his Panda family and raised by a kindly old duck who ran the most popular noodle shop in a remote and ancient Chinese village. As fate would have it, Po becomes a mighty Kung Fu warrior who saves his village and greater China—from certain doom.
Along with Po’s Kung Fu fighting partners (voiced by Jolie, Lucy Liu, Seth Rogen and Jackie Chan) these fabulous five crime fighters laid waste to all who opposed them.
Then, of course we had the required sequel which re-tread the entire first movie.
Now we have “Kung Fu Panda 3.”
With only a few exceptions, one being again the marvelous animation, this third go around is a dud.
D.O.A.—Dead on Arrival.
I, for one, couldn’t have cared less about the adventures of Po and his rough and tumble gang—we’ve seen it all before.
Of course, there is an obligatory villain trapped in some really stupid realm called the “Spirit World” who comes into our mortal reality, hell-bent on vengeance on all who sent him there eons (or was it three weeks) ago.
Who can tell?
The monstrous Kai (voiced by the great J.K. Simmons) is, of course, “out for revenge” and turns each of the fabulous five—sans Po who runs for the hills to be with his now long-lost but conveniently found Panda clan—into “evil” jade monsters.
Then “Kung Fu Panda 3” goes way off the rails and smack dab into the realm of the silly and stupid about finding one’s inner Chi … or something like that.
Of course there is a “final battle” between Po and Kai back in the good ‘ol Spirit World where—wait for it—Po actually becomes a super hero—cape and all.
The writers of the “Kung Fu Panda” series—Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger—must have locked themselves away in their writers room, chowing down on stale pizzas and guzzling warm sodas (just like in a maximum security prison) only to emerge with this pile of smoldering, stinking tripe.
“Kung Fu Panda 3” is thankfully short—just long enough for your three-year-old tyke to slurp down a caffeinated sugar drink. It is boring to the extreme and the additional of Po into the superhero genre is enough for any sane person to be screaming at the 35 ft. tall silver screen.
Boy, I sure was!
Unless it’s “Star Wars,” stay far far away from any movie with number slapped onto the back of the title, clearly it is there only for the greedy Hollywood producers to pluck up your pesos into their “Vac U Suck Machine.”
And if there is a “Kung Fu Panda 4,” all I can say is … good grief!
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