Saturday, June 19, 2010

You'll get a kick out of The Karate Kid remake...

Finally, a movie remake worth going to see. The Karate Kid is really worth watching and Jaden Smith certainly ramps up the coolness factor of his neophyte film career.
The Karate Kid billboardI honestly can't believe he was the annoying kid in The Day The Earth Stood Still. But maybe that's just because his character was purposefully annoying in that terrible sci-fi remake.

Luckily he's really likable in The Karate Kid, even when he's being a bit of a brat about moving all the way to China from America when his single mother gets a new job there.

The new film has heart, is sweet and charming, is great fun at times, but also something you can see with the whole family and enjoy it.

I went to see the movie last Friday when it opened at the Cinerama Dome and there was a real mixture of young and old there, families, older couples and then people like me (who go for the 80's nostalgia factor and also because it features some cool kung fu).
The Karate Kid movie billboard
Setting the story in China really gives the movie an authenticity and different flavour, plus also having a mainly non-white cast, sets it apart from its predecessor.

I was also really impressed that someone so young as an actor, around eleven years old, can be so dedicated to train this hard and be so focused so young.

The movie has some really cool fight scenes, no doubt made more impressive by modern day wirework special effects. The first scene we see Jaden's character cut loose with his newfound skills with his mentor, played by Jackie Chan, after repeatedly taking on and off his jacket is an especially super cool cinematic moment.

For anyone wanting to watch this movie for nostalgia, my best advice is not to rewatch the original before you go, or if you remember it well, try not to compare the two versions too much. Simply take this remake on its own merits, it's a new film for a new generation.
The Karate Kid remake billboard
The Karate Kid deserves three *** stars and maybe more, but it could do with shaving at least fifteen or twenty minutes off the first half of the movie to help speed things up and not lingering on the bullying aspect so heavily (really, we got it the first time).

Overall it's an entertaining, watchable movie which I'm sure will spawn its own sequels quite quickly.

I'm still not quite sure why he's called The Karate Kid when it's kung fu he's practicing though...

Buy the original 1984 movie in the USA: The Karate Kid (Special Edition)

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