Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Karate Kid (A Review)

Recently I had the opportunity to see both the Karate Kid and the A-Team.

I'll start by reviewing the better of the two, The Karate Kid. I'll post my review for the A-Team in a couple of days.

Because this is such a popular movie franchise I'm going to assume you already know the plot (or can easily look it up). I'm going to get right into what I thought of it.

Jaden Smith (Will Smith's son), did a pretty good with his role. It was a believable and humorous character. I appreciated the fact that he didn't have that annoying 'Disney channel vibe' about him.

Jackie Chan played a more subtle role than he traditionally does. He quiet and introspective, showing a side we don't often see. Unlike the roster of films where Chan is constantly fighting baddies, he only has one fight scene in this movie.

The other actors did a reasonably good job, although there is one blond haired kid I found irritating.

If you know anything about remakes, then you're aware that they always feel a need to be bigger and better than their predictors. Although it often just amounts to more sugar and less substance. Personally, I felt this movie did a standup job of avoiding this fatal flaw. The action was more stylized and fast paced, however it made the movie more fun to watch.
Also on a positive note, this adaption did have less objectionable content than the original. There are several minor profanities in this version as a opposed to the classic, which contains a number of strong words.

My two biggest problems with the movie where: length and lack of heart. I believe the two are somewhat related.

At 2 hours 6 minutes, this movie was simply too long. There were also a number of scenes which dragged on and really caused me to lose interest in the movie. In fact, I actually left the theater to make a call during a rather pivotal scene and didn't feel upset that I'd missed anything. As director, Will Smith could have really done some fat trimming on this one.

When it comes to heart, this film certainly had a god portion, I found myself cheering quietly for Jaden as the final showdown takes place. Alas, this will never really be the true Karate Kid no matter how good it is. The is no way it can match the charm of the original, even if it is a good movie.

If you plan on seeing this one, I'd advise you to wait until the DVD is released.

Thanks for reading!


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