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  • Writer's pictureAaron Fonseca

Kung Fu Panda 4 Chops Up Record-Breaking Rotten Tomatoes Debut

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The animated sequel Kung Fu Panda 4 debuts with a new record at Rotten Tomatoes.

Ahead of its wide release in theaters, Kung Fu Panda 4 has debuted with an initial score of 76% with its early reviews. While this is a fresh rating, it sets the new low for the franchise, following the higher scores set by Kung Fu Panda (87%), Kung Fu Panda 2(81%), and Kung Fu Panda 3 (87%). The good news is the film is just five percentage points away from matching Kung Fu Panda 2. If more of the reviews that are soon to come in are largely positive, it's possible that Kung Fu Panda 4 could climb out of its unfortunate spot of being the lowest-rated film on the review aggregator website.

"Kung Fu Panda 4 clearly aims to refresh the franchise. But it’s really more of the same, which is not such a bad thing," wrote THR reviewer Frank Scheck, enjoying the film even if it's not groundbreaking. Meanwhile, The Weekend Warrior critic Edward Douglas was among those who gave the sequel a bad review, noting of the movie, "Younger kids should enjoy themselves just fine, but other than a few fun moments, Kung Fu Panda 4 is mostly dull and quite uninspired."

Past Fan Favorites Are Missed in Kung Fu Panda 4 

"We're in a narrative rut with two characters at extreme ends of their enlightened paths, but neither is explored in ways that don't result in fisticuffs," "Long gone are the secondary characters voiced by Angelina Jolie, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, and David Cross. Randall Duk Kim, who voiced the turtle Oogway -- a character whose presence reverberates throughout the series despite only really being alive in the first film -- was the series' best character, a wellspring of grandfatherly wisdom, who still imbued the first film with a delicate grace -- a fast-dwindling resource that is absent from Kung Fu Panda 4."

There are some returning actors from the franchise who join Jack Black, who's back once again as the voice of Po. Other returning stars include Dustin Hoffman (Master Shifu), James Hong (Mr. Ping), Bryan Cranston (Li Shan), and Ian McShane (Tai Lung). Newcomers to the cast include Awkwafina, VIola Davis, Ke Huy Quan, Lori Tan Chinn, and Ronny Chieng.

Mike Mitchell directed Kung Fu Panda 4. It is written by Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger, and Darren Lemke.

Kung Fu Panda 4 officially releases in theaters on March 8, 2024.

Source: Rotten Tomatoes

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