Kung Fu Panda 4 | Third Space

Kung Fu Panda 4

Like a big Panda hug. Warm, cuddly and familiar.
Sun 17 Mar 2024



⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ (out of 5)

Jack Black must be one of Hollywood's most unlikely movie stars. Throughout his career, this lovable and comical figure has delivered many iconic characters like Barry Judd (High Fidelity), Dewey Finn (School of Rock), and Bowser (The Super Mario Bros Movie). Yet, the alter ego character that has spanned generations is Po from the Kung Fu Panda franchise, introduced in 2008.

Over the years, the winsome Panda has gone from a dumpling-selling dreamer to the Dragon Warrior of the Valley of Peace. His adventures have led to the defeat of many villains who all have fallen prey to his unexpected kung-fu skills. His fame has come through his success on the battlefield. Still, Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman) has even bigger plans for the furry warrior. Po must become the spiritual leader of the Valley of Peace and determine who his successor will be in the role of Dragon Warrior. Initially, the Panda resists giving up his title and taking on the leadership responsibility until a new adversary makes herself known in Juniper City. The Chameleon (Viola Davis) is a power-hungry sorceress and shapeshifter who begins to take on all his former foes' powers. With the help of an unlikely ally as a guide, Po befriends a fox bandit named Zhen (Awkwafina), who will help him find this new enemy and may assist in discovering his eventual successor.

The longevity of this series relies heavily on the charisma of its lead character and the voice behind his furry exterior. Despite being a familiar story and a predictable outcome, fans of Kung Fu Panda will get precisely what they have come to expect over the years. This fourth instalment benefits from the chilling villainy of Academy Award-winning actress Viola Davis. Despite being the smallest adversary in the franchise, her bone-chilling delivery provides the tone needed to make for a terrifying supervillain. The action sequences are fun, but familiar, and the laughs pack no real surprising punches. There is an intriguing 'father hook' that taps into the skills of James Hong and Bryan Cranston, but doesn’t introduce anything new to the franchise. Still, there are enough laughs and fight scenes to satisfy the faithful while winning over any new fans to the martial arts storyline.

Kung Fu Panda 4 travels out of the Valley of Peace and ventures into the big city of Juniper City. The journey feels like a well-travelled road to an inevitable conclusion. One that will keep the faithful followers wanting more and provide parents with a safe option for families to enjoy a day at the cinema.

What should parents know about Kung Fu Panda 4? Parents should consider two things before going to see the Dragon Warrior’s latest adventure. The first would be that the effectiveness of Viola Davis as a villain and the scarier aspects of her character may make this less than ideal for children under the age of five. She eventually embodies all of the worst aspects of Po’s foes, which can make for alarming scenes that might cause some bad dreams for the little ones. Yet, the spiritual elements are the most important thing for parents to know. This series is a deep-dive into Eastern Mysticism and serves to indoctrinate a generation on these practices. Parents shouldn’t dismiss this as innocent fun, but instead take time to understand what these religious principles teach their children.

It is worth knowing that inner peace is not found by sitting under a cherry blossom tree or in the lotus position. Instead, true peace can only be found in the person of Jesus.

​​Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all. - 2 Thessalonians 3:16

If you would like to discuss how to find true peace, reach out to us at Third Space. We would love to chat with you about this and more.

The word becomes film

Russ Matthews' new book is a modern-day parable that introduces a radically easy way of talking about God’s story

If you order the book today you will also receive a complementary study guide that is only available with the purchase of the book (Print or ebook)

More like this ...

Jane Overeem, Bec Polmear, Aaron Johnstone | 1 Oct 2023
'that unnatural burning sensation in my throat and chest’
Aaron Johnstone, Natasha Moore | 1 Aug 2023
What is a spiritual view of the world?
Aaron Johnstone, Ariane 'Ari' Moore | 8 Jun 2023
Can you touch the divine if you don't believe in God?
Stephen McAlpine | 1 Dec 2022
When words are weaponised against us