Movie review for Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016) and Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny (2016)

Before my first semester for my postgraduate study officially begins next week, I’m still enjoying my free time in Perth. Without any assignments yet, I’m almost bored to death spending most of my time in my room. Not only that I watched ‘Deadpool’ one more time in Perth after having watched it already back in Malaysia before I came here, I also managed to watch two new movies released this year.

The first one is ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’. It is a computer-animated action comedy martial arts film and is the third installment in ‘Kung Fu Panda’ film franchise which mainly revolves on an unlikely panda being selected as a ‘dragon warrior’ alongside the help of his master and his martial-art friends to protect a valley from villains. In this sequel, Po (the panda) has to face with a supernatural villain whom is out to defeat all the kung fu masters across China. At the same time, Po is also reunited with his long lost father and discovered many more of his species (panda) in a secret village to his surprise and joy.



Just like its two predecessors, this latest movie delivered with highly entertaining story and characters. Eventhough we have seen the same characters and the similar plot in the first two movies, this third one still manage to capture our attention and had me engaged. There are still plenty of hilarious scenes to keep it a good and a fun comedy while the film is also successful from its beautiful animation works and some positive messages to learn from. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’ a total of 7.7. Surprisingly, I’m still not tired with this franchise and I’m more than fine for this franchise to keep expanding. One of the big thing many people didn’t know about this film is that most of the cast involved for the voices of the characters in this animated movie are big movie stars; Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Jackie Chan, J.K. Simmons, Bryan Cranston, Dustin Hoffman, Seth Rogen, Kate Hudson, etc.

The second movie is ‘Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny’. It is a martial-arts film and is a sequel to the critically-acclaimed 2000 film titled ‘Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon’. The first film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (the first and the only Chinese film to do so in history of Oscars) as well as three other Academy awards, while also being nominated in the Best Picture category. I didn’t get to watch that one but I have heard of many positive feedback to that one. In this sequel, all of the original cast members did not return except for Michelle Yeoh. Well, I would love to see her in a new film since we are Malaysians and hence I allocate my time for this movie.



Well, as expected, it would be not as good as the first one as seen on the comparison of reviews for both movies from critics across the world. However, it is still an enjoyable Chinese film with plenty of action sequences on martial arts shown throughout the movie. Michelle Yeoh is now getting old (she is now over 53) but she still managed to perform some great stunts in this movie. The same goes to Donnie Yen who joined this film as the leading actor. Well, I’m always seeing him in recent Hong Kong martial arts films and so it is not surprising that he would be in this movie too. He is convincing on his fight scenes as expected but there isn’t any chemistry between him and Michelle Yeoh in this movie. Anyway, the movie is fine for me (the story is not bad) and I would rate the film a total of 7.1.

Before I’m ending this post, I find that the recent Chinese films like to put in excessive CGIs (visual effects) into the movies including this one. I don’t think it is necessary and the more I see of those CGIs, the more I felt how they interrupted the feel of the movie instead of enhancing it. Quality of visual effects in Chinese productions is still far behind from Hollywood standard. Hence, I hope that there wouldn’t be too much of ‘forced’ insertion of CGIs into future Chinese films especially the big-budget ones. You simply just waste huge sum of money on heavy and unrealistic effects for very little purpose.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)



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