Box art for Kung Fu Panda

Kung Fu Panda

action & adventure, anime & animation, children & family, comedy


Stars Jack Black as an unlikely "chosen one", who is trained by the "furious five" martial arts masters (Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Jackie Chan, Lucy Liu and Ian McShane) to become the Kung Fu Panda.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
    87%
  • Audience Score
    82%
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common sense

ON for kids age 6
Consumerism
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
0 out of 5
Language
0 out of 5
Positive messages
3 out of 5
Positive role models
3 out of 5
Sexy Stuff
0 out of 5
Violence & scariness
3 out of 5

Appealing kid-friendly comedy; some scary scenes.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that kids will definitely want to see this heavily promoted (including McDonald's Happy Meals) animated film -- which stars kid fave Jack Black as the voice of the main character, Po. And its humor and heartwarming story will appeal to grown-ups, too. The movie boasts positive messages about being who you are and believing in yourself, but it is martial arts-themed, so expect plenty of fast-paced battle scenes with kicks, punches, falls, and more. Even though they're animated, some sequences -- especially the one in which intimidating villain Tai Lung escapes from prison -- may be a little too scary for kindergartners and younger. Families who buy this on DVD as the "Pandamonium Double Pack" are also getting a cartoon short called Secrets of the Furious Five. See our review.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about Po's decision to follow his dreams and pursue martial arts greatness. Was he right? What makes Po different from the other heroes in the movie? What do they learn from him? And what does Po's ease with himself teach young viewers? What makes him such a great kung fu warrior?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    87%
    reviews counted: 22
    see all Kung Fu Panda reviews
  • Audience

    82%

Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: The aphorisms creak. The plot's an open book. But all of those clichs are part of the joke in this ebullient ursine coming-of-age tale about a humble panda destined for greatness.

- Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle, Friday, July 18, 2008

Fresh: Hands down the most visually striking of DreamWorks Animation's releases, this lively CGI comedy is tailor-made for Jack Black.

- Andrea Gronvall, Chicago Reader, Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Fresh: The animation work is dazzling; it's lovingly detailed without being overdone (particularly the opening sequence, which is hand-drawn and looks like prints struck from ancient woodblocks).

- Bruce Diones, New Yorker, Friday, November 22, 2013

Audience Reviews

4 stars

A greatly detailed animation film that is full of fun. You can tell when an animation film has had a lot of time, care and thought put into it. The quality of the lighting, shadows, reflections and even fur are up there with the best animations. It's bright and colourful as well to appeal to the kids. Didn't notice the strong voice cast until the credits came up including Jackie Chan, to have all of them in one film is impressive, in an animated film even more so. This is a funny film all ages should enjoy. Looking forward to the sequel out now!

- Deano78, Saturday, June 18, 2011

2 stars

A clumsy and gluttonous panda is revealed to be the chosen one to become the Dragon Warrior and defeat the evil former student of his master. Kung Fu Panda pretty much does what it says on the tin. It's exactly the kind of Americanized version of Eastern culture I was expecting, including the Karate Kid format, usual fortune cookie philosophy and pseudo-martial arts, right through to the slightly embarrassing use of Carl Douglas' Kung Fu Fighting for the credits. It is a very technically accomplished film however, with animation of a very high standard and some very, very pretty use of imagery. Jack Black also managed to dial himself down a notch so even those who find him terminally irritating should be able to swallow him for 90 minutes and it's all very difficult to dislike. I'm sure kids will get a kick out of seeing cutesy teddy bears kicking the stuffing out of each other, but for me it felt a bit like watching someone else play Fur Fighters crossed with the Yoda fight scenes from the prequels and seriously needed an injection of laughs for the adult audience. Inoffensive enough, but Mulan was better in my humble opinion.

- garyX, Saturday, June 18, 2011

3 stars

Funny and quite stylish, but entirely insubstantial, which is ok.

- fb1686480544, Thursday, March 28, 2013