Is there a Kong Fu Panda 3?

Common sense tells us that the past predicts the future. A child prodigy would more probably become a first-class artist or scientist than an average kid, and successful selling record would leads the salesperson to a higher position. However, it is not necessarily true when we talk about movies.

This summer has seen, and will see, quite a number of sequences to previous blockbusters. I have seen the Pirates 4, the Kong Fu Panda 2; there are also Hangover 2, Fast and Furious 5, Cars 2, Transformers 3, etc. These sequences are not all comparable to their precedents. When I came to see the pirates, the theatre was almost packed; for the Panda 2, in the contrast, its watchers could be counted with two hands. Reviews have indicated that Hangover 2 has similar twists and plots as those in the first, so probably I won’t watch it. I probably will, with reluctance, see the Transformers 3, simply because its special effects will be by no doubt superior, and much more watchable than on a small TV screen. Fast 5 seems to be a great movie, but I have never watched its 4 precedents on silver screen, so I will not this time. 

I understand that it makes sense to make sequences. It is not easy to have novel ideas, especially novel and profitable ones. Just like great products like Wii, once the milk is skimmed, the price is greatly reduced yet the product is still on the market. In such manner the moviemakers keep selling the products (e.g., Kong Fu Panda, Transformers), even though the price has to be reduced, as long as there are still rooms for profits. And who knows for sure if a sequence is a bomb or a blockbuster? No one.

When geniuses are exhausted, the market then is full of modified products and replacements. Revolutionary products, like iPod, facebook, do not come out in regular periods. A regular update is more like a marketing gimmick,  to make some buzz, to keep consumers engaged, to maintain the sales flow. That is, of course, very important for the company and for the brand, but is to cause frustration and disappointment in the consumers.

Maybe the consumers pay to watch the sequences, partially to refresh the sweet memory the previous episode brought to, but also partially to expect some surprise, something even better, not necessarily bigger, faster, louder, and killing more, but with more profound meanings, more twisted plots, and more bewildering questions.

That is it. Hope. We support the brand in hope that it could be better, it could be a great series, like The Godfather,  The Lord of The Rings, Back to The Future, Batman, X-men, Superman, Saw, etc. Every successful first-run has that potential, but not all can actualize it. I went to see Panda 2 in hope that it can compare to the first, and was disillusioned. If ever they make a Panda 3, I probably still will come and watch it, in hope that it could supersede 2; otherwise, I, along with many other moviegoers, will lose the hope and the franchise probably will die.


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