What is the movie Kung Fu Panda 2 about?
Kung Fu Panda 2 is a Movie about a Panda named Po (who is now the dragon warrior) and how he is going to answer the question "who am I" throughout the movie. Po was left by his mother at an early age and in this movie, the memories of his mother leaving him start to come back and this is what sparks his journey to finding himself. This movie combines action (because the evil Lord Shen is trying to take over china and the warriors battle him) with serenity (because there is a calmness to the scenes where Po is realizing who he is and what he is to become.
How is the legacy of Ancient China shown through Kung Fu Panda 2?
There is an obvious reflection of ancient China in the the movie Kung Fu Panda 2 through the legacy of taoism and Lao Tzu. The whole plot of the movie is based off of how Po the panda wants to find himself and answer that question of "who am I?". A very similar thing was done in the Ancient Times of Lao Tzu and Taoism and that is called finding your Dao. Your Dao is your way or your path and Lao Tzu believe that we are here on this earth to find our path. In this sense, we can tell that Po is a quintessential taoist due to his devotion to the dao. He is also the quintessential taoist because he is very "wu Wei" about things. If something comes up like a "battle" or someone is attacking China, he doesn't think once about it. Po just goes with the flow and does what he is meant to do.
Another common theme that you can see throughout the movie that reflects taoism is the Yin Yang. The Yin Yang is a balance between two opposing forces, for example: good and evil or light and dark. At the end of the movie when in the final battle with Lord Shen, Po is spinning around with one of the fire filled cannon-balls. For a quick second when he is in the air, he forms the shape of a Yin Yang implying that Po is fully good and in order to obtain the balance of two opposing forces, you need a weapon that is purely evil. That weapon is what completed the Yin Yang and helped him defeat Lord Shen. Lao Tzu Believed that everything in life must have a balance.
Why should a future 8th grader choose to do this experience for their Living Color Project?
Some people may think that doing this experience is the "easy way out". Watching a movie is fun and there may not even be a lot to write about. But this experience was fun for two reasons. It was fun because of how entertaining, funny and action packed the movie is, but also because you get to use your mind and look really carefully to find key points to reflect the legacy of ancient China. It was really exciting when you found another thing you can relate to the religion(s) that you're using to relate ancient china to modern times. Overall this experience had 2x the fun than any other experience, and I think that all of the future 8th graders should choose to do this as their Chinese Living Color Experience.