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Review: Kung Fu Panda

movie-reviews Updated: Jul 11, 2008 20:13 IST
Rashid Irani
Rashid Irani
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story



: Jack Black, Angelina Jolie


: John Stevenson & Mark Osborne


: ****

Whether it’s ants, ogres or penguins, there has been a glut of animation flicks featuring ultra-cute critters with celebrity voices. Add a giant panda to the list.

Obviously inspired by the chopsocky spoof, Kung Fu Hustle (2005), this feelgood fantasy blends consistently amusing animated characters with wondrous visuals.

DreamWorks, which produced the cartoon milestones Shrek and Madagascar, escort the viewer to a peaceful realm in ancient China. And as it happens, there’s plenty for children as well as adults nd children to relate to in this entertainer about Po a podgy panda (dubbed with whooping enthusiasm by Black).

The laziest animal in the entire kingdom, Po reluctantly agrees to protect his fellow furries from the wrath of a formidable nemesis (Ian McShane, gleefully menacing).

Learning his skills from a group of fabled warriors (Jolie-Lucy Liu-Jackie Chan) led by their wizened guru (Dustin Hoffman, suitably benign), Po transforms from a kung fu novice to martial arts expert. Get set, then, for pure panda-monium

Co-directed by music-video helmer Osborne and veteran animator Stevenson, Kung fu Panda appeals as much to the heart as to the mind. It’s guaranteed to have you walking out of the multiplex with a big smile on your face. Enjoy.