|Po the panda (voiced by Jack Black) goes on an uncertain attack with his pals in “Kung Fu Panda 2.”|
An unfortunate coincidence happens in DreamWorks’ “Kung Fu Panda 2” when the roly-poly panda Po (voiced by Jack Black) gets stuck on a conveyor belt that’s about to dump him into a fiery incinerator.
The scene begs comparison with a similar sequence in Pixar’s animated masterpiece “Toy Story 3” where Woody and the gang are nearly fried to the nubs in the same manner.
The “Toy Story 3” scene was as intense and heart-stopping as an animated feature can get.
The one in “Kung Fu Panda 2”? Just one in a series of cartoony, strobe-edited, 3-D action sequences in which you never seriously worry that the characters might actually be killed or critically injured.
Which, of course, they never are. Not really.
Nonetheless, “Kung Fu Panda 2” makes for an engaging, kid-safe adventure that’s visually superior to and quicker paced than its 2008 original box-office hit.
Po also gets to tangle with an impressively evil villain, a deadly and graceful peacock named Lord Shen (diabolically voiced by “Harry Potter” staple Gary Oldman).
Shen really disappoints his parents when he figures out how to convert the beautiful magic of fireworks into deadly weapons: cannons powered by gunpowder. (Read more…)