12-year-old Dre Parker could've been the most popular kid in Detroit, but his mother's latest career move has landed him in China. Dre immediately falls for his classmate Mei Ying - and the feeling is mutual - but cultural differences make such a friendship impossible. Even worse, Dre's feelings make an enemy of the class bully, Cheng. In the land of kung fu, Dre knows only a little karate, and Cheng puts "the karate kid" on the floor with ease. With no friends in a strange land, Dre has nowhere to turn but maintenance man Mr. Han, who is secretly a master of kung fu. As Han teaches Dre that kung fu is not about punches and parries, but maturity and calm, Dre realizes that facing down the bullies will be the fight of his life. Written by
As noted on a featurette, Jackie Chan was the one who came up with the "jacket" routine as a means of teaching Dre Kung-Fu moves. See more »
When Mr. Han and Dre visit Master Li's Kung Fu school, they witness him punishing one of his students by slapping him in the face. The student falls backwards as if being hit almost a full second before Master Li's hand would have connected with his face. See more »
What a waste of 36 bucks. And that doesn't count the popcorn and drinks. Somehow I got dragged into this movie by my kid and was prepared to see a Will Smith horror of a remake but figured I take one for the team.
It was worse.
Not only was the charm and creativity of the original completely absent from this gratuitous Smith family showcase, but the whole premise was preposterous. Although they claim he is 12, the actual actor is 10 going on 11 and so frail that you fear his limbs are actually going to snap should he land a blow in real life. Totally miscast project with such a offensive plot to actual Chinese culture that I have to believe it will be changed dramatically for Asian release or simply only available on bootleg in China.
Even if there was no original charismatic "Karate Kid" to compare this to, it was way too full of Will Smith ego and nepotism to be seriously considered as a piece of legitimate, quality film.
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