We’ve all seen the previews or at least heard about the new remake of the old ’80s classic Karate Kid. Well, the movie appeared in theaters just this past Friday, June 11. So how is the remake? Here are nine things you should know
about the movie, before you take the time, spend the money, and/or excite yourself or your kid:
1. You’d think The Karate Kid is full of sweet karate moves. Wrong. There’s NO karate. In fact, there’s lots of Kung Fu. Very different. It should actually be called The Kung Fu Kid.
2. What else is different about the film? It’s set in China instead of SoCal which further alienates young Dre (played by Will and Jada’s boy, Jaden Smith) as a young American in a radically different culture. Otherwise, it’s nearly exactly the same as the original.
3. What about Jackie Chan and his sweet moves? Not what you’re hoping for, but there is one scene where he takes out an entire bad kung fu gang of boys without actually hitting any of them.
4. Wax on, wax off. Not exactly. However, in spirit, in a way that tackles both Dre’s early training and his bad ‘tween habit of leaving his stuff lying around everywhere. I mean how often do you REALLY clean your room? Be honest with yourself. There is a good wink to the original “wax on” line about two-thirds of the way through the movie, though.
5. It’s a movie about kids fighting with kids. How rough is it? Honestly, all jokes aside, it’s shows a little more “no mercy” than the original. Definitely a little tougher, but not radically so.
6. What about training montages? Fear not! There are two good training montages, one of which involving high-kicking on the Great Wall of China. You’ll be happy.
7. Jaden Smith? Ralph Macchio’s shoes are pretty tough to fill. Jaden Smith is going to be a star. The kid’s got the chops, both figuratively and literally, and considering the training he probably went through, I don’t doubt that he’ll be re-making Die Hard in a couple years.
8. Ah yes, the best time for a pee break. This is the reason I always sit on the end of a row! The best time for a pee break is, well, if you’ve seen the original, then pretty much any time is a good time for a break.
9. Bottom Line: The Karate Kid (2010) is a worthy remake/update of the classic Karate Kid (1984). Jackie Chan is surprisingly moving, and Jaden Smith makes you excited to cheer him on. Being filmed in China, the thematic and visual effects are great. The theater will applaud the ending, even though we all know how it ends. All around, a good family film.