Monday, January 12, 2009

Skadoosh. Kung Fu Panda was a legit good kung fu movie.

I finally saw Kung Fu Panda over the weekend and LOVED it. It's a fun kids movie, fun for kids and adults, and, dare I say it, pretty good on its own merit as a kung fu movie. I think we can look at this article about animator and martial arts student Rodolphe Guenoden to see why. Like another show in a similar vein I love, Avatar, Kung Fu Panda bases the movements of its characters on actual martial arts movements. With Panda, Guenoden made sure the animators really understood and appreciated the fight movements and how they are best expressed on film, referencing great kung fu movies, which show how to arrange the shot for maximum artistic value and mis en scene.

I also loved the story, it really captured the essence of martial arts - the emotional side of why we train, why we teach, what we hope to pass on and what really motivates us (for panda Po, it's food! But also heart).Very strong Zen message in this one: Master Oogway sees what Master Shifu cannot - that Po has a natural self that, encouraged and allowed to flow, conquers. All the other characters are impeded in some way, emotionally, whether through pride, fear, approval, disappointment. Only Po discovers that there's "no secret ingredient," that the Dragon Warrior in the Dragon Scroll is the one bring with you.


Blogger Capcom said...

I was totally surprised by how good this movie was, and the spirit of the story. I loved it too.


6:26 PM  

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