It's bad enough moving to a new city, but when that city is located in China, it’s almost too much to handle for 12 year old Dre Parker. It's not easy being the new boy in class when you don’t know the language, and it’s even harder, when the cool boys use Kung Fu to rule over the other pupils at school. Fortunately, Dre meets some nice classmates, including the cute girl (he fancies) Mei Ying. However, it turns out that Cheng, the leader of the Kung Fu gang at his school, also likes May, and is not particularly thrilled that Dre and May are becoming friends.
Dre has hardly set foot into his new apartment, before Cheng uses his Kung Fu skills to give Dre a real beating. From this moment on, Cheng is constantly on Dre’s back. Dre becomes increasingly unhappy and longs to go back to the United States. But one day, as he is pushed into a corner by Cheng and his friends, he gets unexpected help. Mr Han, the caretaker of the apartment building where Dre lives, appears from nowhere and defends Dre with an incredible display of Kung Fu. This becomes the turning point in Dre’s new life.
Mr Han decides to teach Dre the traditional combat sport, giving the boy a chance to win the respect from his classmates. Thus begins a long training period that ends up with a final battle between Dre and Cheng’s gang at the local Kung Fu competition. ”The Karate Kid” is a remake of the classic 1984 film of the same name. The new version is a well-made film that will certainly engage the imagination of both young and old. The story is largely the same as the original, however, a number of elements have been renewed, making "The Karate Kid" anno 2010 better than most remakes.
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The film's theme focuses largely on the inner struggle of Dre. The young boy must adjust to a country with a foreign language, and a completely different culture and a city where he has almost no friends. When he is exposed to physical abuse, the previously well-adjusted boy becomes quite distressed. But Dre has great inner strength, and as his friendship with Mr Han develops, he learns more than Kung Fu. Dre understands that he is in charge of his own fate/future, and it is up to him whether he will give up, or fight to gain the respect he deserves.
Such a message is well suited for children and young people, who will hopefully use this knowledge in their own lives. This film will probably promote martial arts to many young boys, and hopefully they will understand Mr Han’s clear statement that Kung Fu is a sport for wisdom and defence / an art to be used to create peace, not to hurt and combat an enemy. I think the ”The Karate Kid” has a PG rating, due to several violent scenes involving Kung Fu fighting, the film is not recommended for children under the age of 8 from the online website.
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