Movie Review: The Karate Kid (Remake)

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Worst Remake Ever.

Previously, this honor was held by Willy Wonka with Johny Depp; what an abomination. However, my current winner of the prize was the recent remake of The Karate Kid with Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith.

The plot shifted from a 16-year old New Jersey kid moving to Southern California to a 12-year old urban kid moving to Beijing, China.  Otherwise, it is generally the same.  However, the details are radically different.  To be clear, I think the original Karate Kid is a great movie and my children agree.

The age factor.  Jaden Smith is a little kid.  It was painful enough seeing Ralph Macchio being bullied and beat up, but watching an eleven year old being kicked in the chest was just shocking and obscene.  A little kid like that working out with his shirt off, sweating was borderline child pornography and offensive.  I just couldn’t get over the age thing.  He was just TOO young. Mr. Miyagi was an old short guy.  It made sense that he was fighting a bunch of teenagers.  When Jackie Chan beat up a bunch of 12 years olds, I was just sickened.

The acting.  Jaden Smith does a great imitation of Will Smith.  So now, we have an 11 year old Will Smith. Yay? You can’t be cool and the Karate Kid at the same time.  Daniel LaRusso was purposely goofy and awkward.  That was his charm.  Jackie Chan was pathetic and Jaden Smith was a cocky brat.  No one performed well at all.  It was pathetic.

The word “Karate”. They didn’t mention Karate at all.  Just Kung Fu.  This is the Kung Fu kid.  Why did they name it the Karate Kid when it was Kung Fu?  Am I the only one paying attention?  WTF?!  It’s Karate!  And they weren’t even doing Karate!  It was Jackie Chan jump around like a nut nonsense.

CGI. What the fuck (pardon the french) do we need CGI animation for a remake of the Karate Kid?   Seriously??  You need him to flip over backwards?  Why?  What’s the point?!  Come on!  This is just awful.  What is with all these movies that feel like they have to do this?  I got the movie from Netflix expecting there to be good acting not CGI animation.  If I wanted CGI I would have got Shoalin Soccer.

The car. So Jackie Chan rebuilds the car each year and then smashes it?  What is this?  Burning Man??  Something is super wrong with this scenario.  It was contrived and not moving.  And the thing with the sticks just seemed dumb.  No charm, just lame setup.

Here is what I think happened. Will Smith, wife Jada and son Jaden watched the Karate Kid and Jaden loved it.  Wax on!  Wax Off!  Show me “sand the floor!”.  Then he said, “Daddy!  Daddy!  Please pay for me to be in a movie!  I want to be the Karate Kid!  Woo hoo!”  Then Will Smith said, “Oh, look how cute he is…I suppose we could make a movie for you, right Jada?”  Jada says, “Yeah!  Let’s have the whole thing in China.  China is pretty!  I want to visit China!”  Seriously, this is what I think happened.  Someone on the set said, “Hey, you know we don’t do Karate here in China, right?”  That guy got fired.

OK, my rant has run it’s course.  This movie sucked.  Please watch this hilarious video with Ralph Macchio below.  It’s worth more in 2 minutes than the remake is worth in 2 hours.

If you see the movie of have seen it, please don’t say you liked it. It will only make me crazy.


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