The Fanboy SEO reviews Kung Fu Panda 3 from Dreamworks and 20th Century Fox. Featuring the voice of Jack Black and Bryan Cranston. Opens March 9.

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I’m impressed with the Kung Fu Panda franchise for being able to retain my attention when it should be old and bothersome for me. I’m impressed that they managed to find a big conflict and push Po’s role even further without selling us crappy plots. Lastly I’m impressed that they managed to get more stars to work on this project.

Living large and loving life, Po (Jack Black) realizes that he has a lot to learn if he’s going to fulfill the next challenge from his beloved instructor (Dustin Hoffman). After reuniting with his long-lost father (Bryan Cranston), Po must transition from student to teacher and train a group of fun-loving, clumsy pandas to become martial-arts fighters. Together, the kung-fu brethren unite to take on the evil Kai (J.K. Simmons), a supernatural warrior who becomes stronger with each battle.

I have to say I love the visuals. So much heart and effort was put into making the movie and you can see that all throughout the movie. They really upped the ante for the Palace and even the secret Panda Village looks great on IMAX 3D. Great touches to making the Furious Five, Po and the rest of the characters have also been done. Very impressed.

Putting Po in a teacher’s position is a great introduction then having his dad back makes for an interesting change of dynamics. There’s just so much you have to take in as a viewer and yet surprisingly I didn’t have a hard time following.

The main bad guy here, Kai (J.K. Simmons) is a tad overkill and while he suffers from being a 2 dimensional character, you gotta love Simmons’ performance here. Plus the weapon is very reminiscent of Kratos from the God of War franchise.

I’m very fond of the concept they used of taking “chi” and then turning both dead and living warriors into jade zombies that can be sent to battle. It’s very “Blackest Night” to some extent.

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Another concept I loved in Kung Fu Panda 3 was Po’s new costume. Now I don’t want to spoil anything but if you’re a fan of those old kung fu movie from the 70s and 60s, you might have encountered this design for one of the heroes.

More often than not I found something funny in Kung Fu Panda 3 and I’m sure the kids who also attended the screening had a good laugh or two. Sadly the jokes come far and between which could have really been awesome. Po’s panda family had some great moments and they are adorable but given that they had half the movie for themselves, they didn’t have enough funny moments that adults can laugh along with.

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Overall, Kung Fu Panda 3 is a decent animated film. Kids and adults would love it but I was wishing there could be more. They were already on the right path too.

VERDICT: 8/10

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