MOVIES: Four times over, Kung Fu Panda is sure to be big again with families

There are only a few new movies this week, but there’s a lot to tell you anyway. You know the Academy Awards are on Sunday and you probably know the favorite is oppenheimer. He has gained momentum thanks to the many other awards he has already won.

The closest competition seems to be International Films, where there are five strong nominees: Io Captain, Perfect days, Snow Society, Teachers’ Hall and The area of ​​interest. They are all excellent. It would be difficult to choose.

In the documentary feature category I hope kill a tiger, an exciting film set in India but made by a Canadian originally from there. It is about a father’s courage to break through the town’s limitations and obtain punishment for the men who raped his daughter after a dance. It is against 20 days in Mariupol But I think it still has a good chance. If you haven’t seen it, you can do so, for free, on the National Film Board’s website.

And these are the new titles this week:

KUNG FU PANDA 4: The first three made so much money that, of course, there had to be a fourth. Even eight years later. And it’s brought in new voices like Oscar winner Viola Davis and fan-worthy Awkwafina, while bringing back many from before – Jack Black, naturally, but also Dustin Hoffman, Ian McShane and Brian Cranston. The goal is to give you more of the same, much more. He’s even louder and more hyperactive than I remember from the previous one.

Courtesy of Dreamworks and Universal Films

Ironically, the theme this time is change. His teacher (Hoffman) urges the once-lazy panda named Po (voiced by Black) to retire from his hard-earned role as Dragon Warrior and become a spiritual leader.

Dustin Hoffman and Jack Black, in characters. Courtesy of Dreamworks and Universal.

Although that’s not his thing; kicking ass it is. So he refuses to change and the arrival of a new villain gives him the excuse he needs. She is a sorceress (voiced by Viola Davis) who is a lizard but capable of shapeshifting into a creature of any size. She wants to rule the world and tries to take possession of Po’s Staff of Wisdom in order to achieve it. If she succeeds, she will be able to bring back all the villains that Po defeated in the previous movies. But how can she find her to stop her? A cunning fox with the voice of Awkwafina knows how and allies herself with him, but it turns out with dubious motives.

We get a complex story, huge action scenes, and crisp, sometimes flashy animation. That’s all good and well, but you can feel how hard the filmmakers worked to make it huge. The previous movies were very funny. Not so much here. (In theaters) 3 out of 5

COLD ROAD: Here’s another film in the growing list of films made in Canada by and about indigenous people. But that cultural angle is only strongly suggested here and is not the main theme from the beginning. Fear on the road is what is felt here, and intensely so. What you have to endure are long trips on the empty roads of the north. What if there is something bigger to fear? In this movie, it’s about a tractor-trailer that terrorizes a lone driver by tailgating, crashing, swerving back and forth, chasing and impeding his car. Those scenes keep appearing and become progressively heartbreaking. Not unlike the famous television movie, Duel.

Courtesy of Level Film

We never see the trucker; We’re with the host played by Métis/Cree actress Rosanne Supernault. She tries to get home to her dying mother, hundreds of miles away. She talks on the cell phone from time to time with her sister, who she fears won’t arrive on time. She repeatedly reminds us how much gas she has left and how far she has to go. The urgency and tension increase. There are setbacks, including a terrifying gas stop and a confrontation with a suspicious police officer. But again and again that menacing truck appears. The horrible issue of missing and murdered indigenous women is there, not said, but implied. And she, who is said to be shy and worried (with some over-the-top scenes of her complaining about her life to prove it) has to get up. It is a film that will keep you hooked. It is well directed and written by Kelvin Redvers, who is from Hay River, NWT and filmed it there and in Alberta. He learned filmmaking in Vancouver, has made award-winning short films and promotes this one as authentically indigenous. (VOD/Digital on Apple TV) 3 ½ out of 5

RICKY STANICKY: Peter Farrelly won two Oscars five years ago for co-writing, producing and directing the best picture winner. Green Book. So what are you doing to bring out the juvenile humor in this film? The dirty comedies she used to do with his brother Bobby were at least funnier. This one has the smut (more jokes about dicks and masturbation) but far fewer laughs. Too bad because the plot is promising and is based on a common theme of the film: the lie that comes back to haunt you.

This time it’s a full-fledged character, Ricky, who three friends invented as kids when a Halloween prank went wrong. You know, the bag of dog poop burning on the porch? Years later, as adults played by Zac Efron, Andrew Santino and Jermaine Fowler, they still talk as if he were real and actually use him to avoid attending a baby shower and go to a rock concert. But then to cover that up, they have to introduce the real man. They hire an unemployed actor who performs in a nightclub posing as rock stars like Billy Idol and Dee Snyder, but with “idiotic” versions of his songs. They pass it off as fair and sometimes work with Bono on aid projects in Africa. John Cena plays him friendly.

Courtesy of Prime Video

However, the lie continues to get out of control. Ricky impresses the guys’ boss at a financial firm (William H. Macy) so much that they hire him in an attempt to promote philanthropy. Worse still: he has to finish a rabbi’s incomplete work at a circumcision ceremony. With a steak knife. That’s the style of humor you get here, not subtle, not enthusiastically rude. It took eight writers to do it. (Streaming on Prime Video) 2 of 5

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