The Kung Fu Panda films have been charming audiences with their unique mix of comedy and martial arts since the first installment in 2008 – and the DreamWorks animation studio has done it again with Kung Fu Panda 3, which serves action, humor and more besides to largely great effect.
So, Jack Black returns as the voice of lovable panda Po, who – along with his comrades Shifu, Tigress, Mantis, Crane, Viper and Monkey – faces a new adversary in the form of evil yak Kai. Suitably intimidating and wielding supernatural abilities, Kai is intent on stealing Po’s chi to boost his own power.
Kung Fu Panda 3 largely follows the formula of the second, rather than first, film – the focus primarily on danger and soul-searching rather than out-and-out humor. Still, it’s heartwarming in many places, while everything is wrapped up so well that the main Kung Fu Panda films now feel like an assured trilogy.
Incidentally, J. K. Simmons, the voice of Kai, also brings to vocal life the character of Mayor Lionheart in another of this year’s hit animated films, Zootopia. That’s also recently hit the iTunes Store, and you can read more about it in the new issue of AppleMagazine available today.