Po (Black) is in for some more surprises this time around. Not only is he reunited with his father Li (Cranston) after more than two decades, but he also finds out that he has a unique calling in life. Before Po fulfills his true destiny though, he must vanquish the evil Kai (Simmons), who is on a rampage to steal the 'qi' of every kung fu master in the land.
Kung Fu Panda 3 by and large hits the right notes by serving up everything that fans of this franchise have loved, while adding some new elements too. And it's all buoyed up with a fun storyline.
When he finds out the identity of his real dad - despite the fact that Mr Ping (Hong), who raised Po from the time he was a baby, has suspicions about Li - Po also begins to wonder about who he really is. Is he really the Dragon Warrior? And will he be able to reach higher ground? Before all of that, he must learn to embrace all aspects of being a panda, and live in a secret village inhabited only by pandas.
The animation is top notch, and the colours vivid, without being saturated. The editing too has been deftly done, thus ensuring that the movie never drags. In fact, the attention to detail here is truly impressive. For example, the creak of footsteps on a wooden walkway or the clink of nunchuks during a fight sequence and so on.
While Po's friends Master Shifu (Hoffman), Tigress (Jolie), Monkey (Chan), Viper (Liu), Mantis (Rogen) and Crane (Cross) are all a delight to watch, the new entrants are the village pandas. So you get to see baby pandas, dancing pandas and even a bear who loves to give bone-crunching hugs. Thankfully, the abundant humour and various witty asides also steers things clear of a sucrose overdose. While the voice casting is spot on, there are perhaps, a larger number of characters than necessary. Although a slightly over-dramatic ending holds the film back from greater heights, this is on the whole, quite enjoyable for kids as well as adults.