Kung Fu Panda 2
The cute and funny panda named Po who became dragon warrior after defeating a villain tiger and saved the valley of peace returns in the second film of the Kung Fu Panda franchise, titled ‘Kung Fu Panda 2’. Po the dragon warrior who is not a traditionally hardcore kung fu fighter but a funny and glutton panda who reversed his incapacities and became dragon warrior as was prophesized by master of kung fu Oogway.
Unlike most American animated movies that has a storyline which features lives in America, Kung Fu Panda takes up a story that takes place in China and universalizes it. For the audience, it is a piece of work that parents and children watch through together.
The detailed animation of kung fu kicks and fire power satisfies the criteria of an animated action-packed thriller movie, a drama of emotional issues of Po’s past and the Villain’s too that is followed by a self-discovery for Po the panda and comedy of full of jokes and humors.
The movie stars Jack Black as Po, Dustin Hoffman as Master Shifu, Angelina Jolie as Tigress, Gary Oldman as Shen, Jacky Chan as Monkey, David Cross as Crane, Seth Rogen as Mantis and Lucy Liu as Viper.
In the movie the story resumes where Po with his friends and father, Mr. Ping the goose live happily in the valley of peace. Po is the dragon warrior and deemed with respect by the animals of the valley but his lessons are not over. His master Shifu says that Po must gain ‘inner peace’; the highest point of spiritual journey in the virtuous life of a Kung Fu master. ‘Inner peace’ is a state of knowing oneself best and reaching to depth of one’s self and taking control of the path of life. Po makes fun and tries to get away from the austere practices. The story gets intense when a new villain rises. This new villain is named Shen; a peacock.
The story of Shen tells the past of Po. Shen had a gift of firepower. He had dark ambitions to rule all of China. He learned from the court’s goat soothsayer that “a warrior of black-and-white” would one day defeat him. Shen thought that the warrior was a panda and he started destroying panda population to avert the prophecy. Shen’s parents were horrified at this atrocity and exiled Shen, who swore revenge.
Shen strikes back after thirty years and with his destructive weapon he defeats Kung Fu master Thundering Rhino. The news spread to the peaceful valley of Po’s. Alarmed, Po and furious five departs for Gongmen city. Po was adopted by Mr. Ping the noodle maker.
Po and his friends confront Shen’s army of wolves and find their way to the tower of cannons. Po and the furious five were on the losing edge in the battle but they stroke back with together and Shen saw that he did not stand a chance. Po was about to grasp Shen but he was distracted by the sign he had glimpse of previously on a wolf soldier of Shen. Po understood it had something to do with his past and his origin but he could not pull the strings of his memory to find out. Shen claims that Po’s parents never loved him before he blasts Po out of the factory and captures the Five. Po was saved and given treatment by the soothsayer of the court Gongmen City. Guided by the soothsayer to embrace his past, Po remembers that when he was young, his parents had sacrificed themselves to save him from Shen’s extermination, his mother hiding him in a radish crate before being subdued. Po thus attains inner peace, realizing that he had lived a happy and fulfilling life despite this tragedy.
Po returns to Gongmen City to save the captive Five. Shen is about to launch the battleships to on conquest of China. Shen orders to get rid of him. Po uses his inner peace to invent a kung fu technique that allows him to redirect Shen’s cannon fire against his own fleet and destroy it. After most of the ships are destroyed by the joint force of Master Shifu and his disciples and Storming Ox and Croc, two imprisoned Kung Fu heroes of Gongmen, Shen is in no state to strike, Po speaks to Shen urging him to let go of his own past, but Shen attacks Po until he unintentionally slashes the ropes holding up his last cannon, which falls and smashes him to death. Victorious, Po returns to the Valley of Peace. Mr. Ping who was always anxious about Po is overjoyed and runs in a hug with Po. Po was also happy to be back to his dad. At the same time, Po’s biological father living far away who survived the battle with wolves of Shen senses that his son is alive. The story ends here.
The movie Kung Fu Panda 2 is marketed by Dreamworks all over the world. Kung Fu Panda has been viewed as a movie for children as well as for adults. The superb comedy was perfectly commensurate with the fantastic Kung Fu action that was kick for animated comedy-thriller films in the entertainment world. The views of Valley of peace and Gongmen city are mainly based on Chengdu City known as ‘the city of panda’ and Qingcheng, a famous Taoist mountain.
On this movie, the popular film magazine ‘Empire’ notes, “…a richer plot, life lessons and loving Chinese cultural references turns sweet, scary and charming, with yet more fantastical kung fu, make this an engaging winner. Stunning visuals make it real art as well.”