LOCK AND LOAD, EIJIRO!!! (I suspect I’ll be typing ‘lock and load’ quite a bit as the comic goes on, because I love that phrase and I’m quick to forget how often I use it when fictional guns are involved)
I saw Kungfu Panda 3 and thought it was GREAT! I don’t have much to nitpick, but I’m sure I can find something! Once again the Furious Five are relegated to almost tertiary characters, except for Tigress, who is more a bottom of the rung secondary character. Also, the very likable bad guy meets the same fate as the other villains in the series. I kind of wish Po had a better track record for reforming evil, since he seems to have the ‘let’s be buddies’ Naruto-style personality for it! I’m a sucker for redemption stories, and I’d also have liked to see previous bad guys return as protagonists, but this is more wishful thinking and less a criticism of the storytelling. There’s also a plot hole where Po’s dad establishes that the Panda Village is in a super secret location, but both Tigress and then the bad guy Kai are able to find it without any trouble. There’s also the matter of what ‘mastering Chi’ actually means, and why Po had never heard of Chi up until this point! But that’s semantics; since the movie didn’t actually define what constituted mastering Chi, it’s not hard to assume that the feats Po pulls off during his Spirit Realm battle aren’t a form of mastery. Granted, despite Sifu, and every panda in the village being able to channel their chi into Po, Sifu still feels he needs thirty years (and a cave) to master chi himself. I also couldn’t help but note how inconsistent all the characters are in terms of their fighting prowess. Sometimes they do things that are implausibly amazing, and other times they feel like push overs. Certainly we WOULD NEVER be responsible for such inconsistencies in our martial arts epic! >_>; And despite that I noted these things during the film, they did not detract from the sheer joy of the movie as a whole, it is certainly an excellent conclusion to the trilogy.
The Kungfu Panda films are easily my favorite Dreamworks animated franchise, followed closely by How to Train Your Dragon and Rise of the Guardians. It’s almost as great as the first film, which is really quite rare when it comes to movie trilogies! My question now is what’s next for Kungfu Panda? Are the movies done? The third film feels like a finale; it’d be difficult to progress Po’s character in any meaningful way. But, much like Puss in Boots or Penguins of Madagascar, I’d certainly like to see some spin off films! An obvious choice would be a prequel film about a Furious Five origin story, or about a young Oogway, either on his own or meeting and training Sifu. They could potentially time skip into the future and introduce the next Dragon Warrior, or focus on the students of Grand Master Po, whoever they might end up being. I feel like, since the franchise is essentially an homage/parody of Kungfu films, there are still a huge number of tropes to explore. HONESTLY I DON’T EVEN THINK THEY EVER HAD A BLIND WARRIOR?! That is a grave oversight! Plenty of naturally blind animals to turn into martial arts masters out there!Published on by Alex Kolesar