A boy and his mother move to California for a new job. He struggles to fit in, as a group of karate students starts to bully him for dating a rich girl from their clique. It's up to the Japanese landlord, Miyagi, to teach him karate.
Daniel accompanies his mentor, Mr. Miyagi, to Miyagi's childhood home in Okinawa. Miyagi visits his dying father and confronts his old rival, while Daniel falls in love and inadvertently makes a new rival of his own.
12-year-old Dre Parker has moved to China, and finds himself like a fish out of water. He befriends a fellow classmate, Mei Ying, only to make a rival, Cheng, who starts to bully and attack Dre. Soon, Mr Han, the maintenance man of Dre's apartment, fends off Cheng and his friends when they are attacking Dre and signs Dre up to fight in the Kung Fu tournament in return for the bullies laying off of Dre. Dre realizes Mr. Han is much more than a maintenance man, when he's revealed as a master of Kung Fu and Dre soon learns that Kung Fu is about self defense and peace, instead of violence and bloodshed.Written by
Several scenes were cut and trimmed for the mainland Chinese release, including the curtailing of scenes with bullies and the removal of a kissing scene. See more »
During the celebration of winning the first rounds of the tournament, a photographer is seen taking pictures from very close range; under one meter. His camera is sporting a telephoto lens, which usually have a minimal macro distance of 1.2 to 1.4 meters. There is no way the photographer could have been taking clear pictures. See more »
The Karate Kid is a Sino-American Rocky starring the Will Smith family scion, Jaden. He goes to China with his mom, gets beaten up by bad Chinese kids, prepares to revenge in a tournament, and falls in love.
Meanwhile, the underused Jacky Chan plays a maintenance man teaching Jaden to fight. Jaden shows no exceptional talent, and there's little of the philosophy that makes a sentimental piece like this bearable.
Karate Kid is family entertainment trying to show the importance of charity, goals, open-mindedness, and resilience. Unfortunately a slow exposition keeps the film from a fast summer pace.
Those who compare this version to the original may be disappointed, and those who are interested in Chinese American relations may find it problematic.
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