Kung Fu Panda 2It seems every summer is the summer of sequels, but both of today’s featured pair of films were a pleasant surprise.

“Kung Fu Panda 2” from Dreamworks delivers a surprisingly solid plot on top of kid-friendly fun and sharp animation, with more to offer than the first outing. While animated, the movie demonstrated a great sense of physics, and many of the visual pieces were as dazzling as anything conjured by “real” action movie directors. It almost made us wish we’d seen the movie in 3D.

And while “Fast Five” was a great big noisy ball of ridiculousness, it wore its big-budget blockbuster genes well. We loved and saw the first “The Fast and the Furious” film… then missed all the ones that followed. But this most recent outing was still a great ride, good enough to make us not mind early talk of a sixth sequel. I don’t know if you’d call what Vin Diesel and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson are doing in this movie “acting,” but it’s fun to watch.

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