The Karate Kid

Film

Action and adventure

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>5</span>/5
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Time Out says

A surprise summer hit in the States, this is another film-making-by-numbers exercise in teenage wish-fulfilment. A Jewish divorcée moves to California from New Jersey, and her son, a male Carrie called Daniel, has terrible trouble fitting in with West Coast ways. His first incipient romance runs foul of the girl's ex, a blond thug who trains at the local karate dojo run by a deranged Vietnam veteran. Fortunately his E.T. comes along in the form of an elderly Okinawan karate master, who not only becomes his special, secret friend but also handily teaches him persistence, inner strength, moral values and karate - which lead him into an apotheosis worthy of Rocky. This is actually director Avildsen's first hit since Rocky, and it has the same mixture of calculation and apparent naïveté. It borrows its formula from both East and West with good humour, and is completely free of intelligence, discrimination and originality. No wonder it was a hit.
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Release details

UK release:

1984

Duration:

127 mins

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

5 / 5

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LiveReviews|4
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ThinkOnlyTree

It's ad hominem, not ad hominine, and I don't know why you capitalized the first letters of a Latin phrase . . . . Leaving the rest of your attempts to sound educated alone, when Miyagi gets called a "nip" it's by a bunch of boorish thugs at the beach, and though he could have physically hurt both of them, he chooses not to. That is all part of the lessons for Daniel. That's its purpose in the plot, which, as obvious as the plot was to you, I don't see how you missed. If it has anything to do with race, it ties into the scene where we learn Miyagi's wife died in child birth while in a Japanese Internment camp and Miyagi was abroad fighting for the US in Europe. For a kids' movie, that's pretty heavy stuff. The fact it's used as character development for Miyagi, and all of that is established in a short scene, is actually pretty tight screen writing. The movie may just be "teen wish fulfillment" but it's done well. It's got a message, teachable moments, and a few nice flourishes on its cookie cutter story. It's a solid film.

ThinkOnlyTree

It's ad hominem, not ad hominine, and I don't know why you capitalized the first letters of a Latin phrase . . . . Leaving the rest of your attempts to sound educated alone, when Miyagi gets called a "nip" it's by a bunch of boorish thugs at the beach, and though he could have physically hurt both of them, he chooses not to. That is all part of the lessons for Daniel. That's its purpose in the plot, which, as obvious as the plot was to you, I don't see how you missed. If it has anything to do with race, it ties into the scene where we learn Miyagi's wife died in child birth while in a Japanese Internment camp and Miyagi was abroad fighting for the US in Europe. For a kids' movie, that's pretty heavy stuff. The fact it's used as character development for Miyagi, and all of that is established in a short scene, is actually pretty tight screen writing. The movie may just be "teen wish fulfillment" but it's done well. It's got a message, teachable moments, and a few nice flourishes on its cookie cutter story. It's a solid film.

Andrew W.

Honestly... I don't remember race being an issue in the movie. Why bring it up in your review of it? Bizarre.

Andrew W.

Honestly... I don't remember race being an issue in the movie. Why bring it up in your review of it? Bizarre.