Categories
Amusing Posters

Kung Fu Panda Kicks Through Glass

Is this bus stop poster for Kung Fu Panda a clever piece of marketing or a creative act of vandalism?

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Categories
DVD & Blu-ray

UK DVD Releases: Monday 17th November 2008

DVD PICKS

Kung Fu Panda (Paramount): One of the best animated films of the year saw Jack Black voice a panda named Po, along with Jackie ChanDustin HoffmanAngelina JolieLucy LiuSeth Rogen and Ian McShane in supporting roles. Set in ancient China, the story involves around a bumbling panda who gets selected to join a group of kung fu warriors who must defend their village. Directed by John Stevenson and Mark Osborne it was one of the best efforts from DreamWorks in recent years with some witty ideas and well executed set-pieces (a prison escape being one of the highlights).

The 2-disc edition is the one to go for as it has a solid selection of extras which break down as follows: 

Disc 1 (Single-Disc Edition):

  • Audio Commentary
  • Meet the Cast
  • Tech of Kung Fu Panda: Pushing the Boundaries
  • Conservation International – Help Save Wild Pandas
  • DWA Jukebox
  • Trailers
  • Set-Top Game: Dragon Warrior Training Academy

Disc 2 (on the “Kung Fu Master Edition”) As above, plus a second disc with the following additional extras:

  • Be a Kung Fu Master
  • Animals of Kung Fu Panda
  • What Kung Fu Style Are You?
  • Do You Kung Fu?
  • “Kung Fu Fighting” Music Video
  • Learn the Panda Dance
  • Learn to Draw
  • Sound Design
  • Land of the Panda
  • Mr. Ping’s Noodle House
  • How To Use Chopsticks
  • Inside the Chinese Zodiac
  • Po’s Power Play
  • Interactive DVD Rom activities: Dumpling Shuffle
  • HP Printable Projects
  • KFP Sound Machine
  • KFP and MAD 2 Activision Game Level
  • Kung Fu Panda Around the World
  • Po Around the World

Stephen Fry in America (West Park Pictures): This six-part BBC series saw Stephen Fry explore America – a country in which he was almost born. Each episode sees him travel around various states in a modified London taxi, as he attempts to explore the history and attitudes of the United States. Beginning in New England and Washington his travels take him through the Deep SouthMississippi, the Canadian border regions and Montana, the South West before concluding in Hawaii and the Pacific.

The DVD contains some unseen footage not shown on the BBC broadcast including: Dice Game in Eastport Maine; Whale talk in Nantucket; On the Mayflower in Plymouth Rock and Oyster fishing in Louisiana.

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ALSO OUT

Benidorm Series 2 (2 Entertain)
Bones – Season 3 (Fox)
Brendon Burns Live – So I Suppose This Is Offensive Now! (Universal)
Chuggington (2 Entertain)
City of Men (Buena Vista)
Creature Comforts USA – Series 3 (2 Entertain)
Doctor Who – Season 4 (2 Entertain)
Free Zone (Bluebell Films)
Golden Balls: The DVD Game (4DVD)
I Served The King of England (Arrow)
Manchester United DVD Annual 2008 (2 Entertain)
Michael McIntyre – Live & Laughing (Universal)
Richard Hammond’s Top Gear Stunt Challenge (2 Entertain)
Sean Lock Live DVD (Universal)
Shaun the Sheep Wash Day (2 Entertain)
Star Stories – Series 2 (4DVD)
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (Disney)
The Mighty Boosh Series 1 to 3 (2 Entertain)
The Rutles: All You Need Is Cash (30th Anniversary Edition) (Second Sight)
The Sopranos: The Complete Series (HBO)
This Christmas (Sony)
Thriller in Manila (4DVD)
Tigrero (Bluebell Films)

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> Buy Kung Fu Panda and Stephen Fry in America on DVD at Amazon UK
> Browse more DVD Releases at Amazon UK and Play
Check the latest DVD prices at DVD Price Check
Take a look at the current UK cinema releases (W/C Friday 14th November)

Categories
Cinema Podcast Reviews

The Cinema Review: Kung Fu Panda / The Visitor / The Mist

This week we review Kung Fu Panda, The Visitor and The Mist.

Listen to the reviews here:

[audio:https://www.filmdetail.com/podcast/get.php?fla=podcast-2008-07-04-91173.mp3]

Download and subscribe to the review podcast via iTunes by clicking here.

> Download this review as an MP3 file
> Kung Fu Panda, The Visitor and The Mist at the IMDb
> Check out the Kung Fu Panda launch at the Cannes Film Festival
> Listen to our recent interviews with Richard Jenkins and Tom McCarthy on The Visitor
> Frank Darabont talking about The Mist to Inside Reel
> Check out local showtimes via Google Movies

Categories
Cannes Festivals

Cannes 2008 Reactions: Kung Fu Panda

Last night saw the out of competition premiere of Kung Fu Panda – the latest animated film from DreamWorks Animation.

After Jack Black posed yesterday for photographers alongside a bunch of pandas and inadvertantly confirmed that co-star Angelina Jolie was pregnant with twins, people finally got a look at the film.

Here is a summary of the critical reaction.

James Rocchi of Cinematical is impressed:

Dreamworks Animation’s latest effort may stick out a little on the Red Carpet at Cannes — where it’s screening out of competition — but it’s certainly a well-made kid’s film that earns high points for how directors John Stevenson and Mark Osborne clearly crafted and contemplated its look and feel with ambition and style.

Richard Corliss of Time is also taken with the cartoon panda:

Today DreamWorks unveiled its latest ani-movie, Kung Fu Panda. As cunning visual art and ultra-satisfying entertainment, it proved an excellent choice.

…some sequences [are] so smartly thought out and spectacularly executed that they might have been designed by an ace stunt coordinator like Yuen Wo-ping.

Todd McCarthy of Variety is more circumspect:

How many underdog kidpic characters have been told “You just need to believe” in recent years? Whatever the ample number, add one more to the list with “Kung Fu Panda,” a nice looking but heavily formulaic DreamWorks animation entry.

It looks like this is going to do solid business when it opens in the US on June 6th and the UK on July 4th.

Here is the moment where Jack Black accidentally let slip Jolie was pregnant with twins whilst in an interview with Natalie Morales of the Today show:

> Kung Fu Panda at the IMDb
> Official site for Kung Fu Panda

Categories
Amusing Cannes Festivals

Cannes 2008: Kung Fu Panda launch at the Carlton

Now this is how to launch a DreamWorks animated film about kung fu pandas in Cannes.

Get Jack Black and about 40 people in panda costumes outside the Carlton Hotel:

Kung Fu Panda screens at the festival tomorrow (Thursday 15th) and opens in the US on June 6th and the UK on July 4th

> Official site for Kung Fu Panda
> Find out more about the film at Wikipedia

Categories
Cannes Festivals

Cannes 2008 Preview: Films Out of Competition

The out of competition films screening at this year’s Cannes Film Festival include some of the more high profile premieres.

Red Carpet at the Palais

OUT OF COMPETITION

Here is a guide to the big films screening out of competition, which means they are not competing for the Palme d’Or and are basically ‘prestige’ premieres.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Dir. Steven Spielberg): The biggest major studio release of the year gets a high profile premiere, with Steven Spielberg bringing a film to the festival for the first time since The Color Purple in 1985.

All eyes around the world will eagerly be awaiting how this installment will fit in with the original trilogy. Plot details have been kept under wraps, but according to the offficial plot sypnopsis at the festival site it begins in 1957 at the height of the Cold War and involves Indy battling Russian agents as he searches for the Crystal Skull of Akator in Peru.

Harrison Ford returns as the famous archaeologist and the supporting cast includes Ray Winstone, Shia LaBeouf, Cate Blanchett, John Hurt, Jim Broadbent and Karen Allen.

It is bound to be a huge hit worldwide, but the big question is whether or not it can please the older, more demading audiences that loved the original trilogy. All eyes will be on the reports coming out of the press screening which happens a few hours before the official premiere. (Screening: Sunday 18th May)

Kung Fu Panda (Dir. Mark Osborne and John Stevenson): The new animated film from DreamWorks Animation is about a panda (voiced by Jack Black) who learns martial arts to fight his enemies.

The film features a starry voice cast including the likes of Jackie Chan, Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie and
Lucy Liu. Cannes has often been a place for DreamWorks to launch their tentpole releases like Shrek or Over the Hedge and this is expected to do similar business.

Maradona (Dir. Emir Kusturica): A documentary about the extraordinary life of Diego Maradona – the legendary Argentine footballer.

If the quality is good, this looks set to get interest from the wider media though the fact that the IMDb lists it as a 2006 film may be a cuase for concern. (Screens: Tuesday 20th May)

Vicky Cristina Barcelona (Dir. Woody Allen): The latest Woody Allen film is about two young American women, Vicky (Rebecca Hall) and Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) who come to Barcelona for a summer holiday only to get invloved with a local painter (Javier Bardem).

Despite the fact that Allen’s recent films haven’t always even secured UK distribution, he is loved in France and the European setting of this film, as well as the solid cast, should ensure a lot of interest. (Screens: Saturday 17th May)

What Just Happened? (Dir. Barry Levinson): The closing night film is based on producer Art Linson’s memoir of the same name, this stars Robert De Niro as an ageing producer struggling to get his new moviein the crazy world of Hollywood.

Despite a solid cast with Bruce Willis and Sean Penn turning up in minor roles as themselves, this only seemed to get lukewarm reviews at Sundance back in January. That said the book it is based on is very funny indeed (especailly the chapter chrinicling the making of The Edge) so it could be a pleasant surprise. (Screens: Sunday 25th May)

Also screening out of competition are:

If you are in Cannes and get to see any of these films then you can leave comments below.

> Official site for the Cannes Film Festival
> Our guide to the history and significance of the festival from last year
> Download the official screenings schedule as a PDF file