The Karate Kid was not only the start of a trilogy (plus one) but it also beget the short lived karate/self defense craze of the mid 80's, spawned several sequels and it also was responsible for a dreadful NES video game. The careers of Ralph Macchio, Pat Morita, Elizabeth Shue, Martin Kove and William Zabka took off. Larry B. Scott from Revenge of the Nerds co-stars as one of the Kobra Kai students.
Young (and I use that term loosely) Danny is tormented by a gang of karate punks after he messes with the head goon's former girlfriend. Instead leaving well enough alone, Danny decides to get tough with the dude and gets embarrassed for it. Tired of being throttled everyday, Danny tries to learn some "karate" and gets into all sorts of trouble. That is until he meets his apartment building's handyman/super who just happens to know a little but of karate. What happens next is the stuff that legends are made of.
I enjoyed this movie very much when I was a lad. It was Rocky for the 80's generation (I guess). The Karate Kid spawned many imitators and parodies (I recommend Love on Delivery a Stephen Chow vehicle). It's a great feel good movie.
I feel I should give a disclaimer before anyone reads this review. I love to hate this movie and hate to love this movie. I can recall seeing this movie as a child growing up and thinking it was pretty cool. Then many years went by and I had totally forgotten this film. About five years ago this movie was played every single night during the summer on HBO or Showtime. So I watched this movie with an older and more matured pair of eyes. This resulted in a different viewing experience. The following … more
In John G. Avildsen's THE KARATE KID, Daniel (Ralph Macchio) and his mother (Randee Heller) move from New Jersey to Southern California, where he's not too keen about his new home--until he meets Ali (Elizabeth Shue), an attractive girl who seems to like him. But trouble looms when Ali's ex-boyfriend (William Zabka) and his gang of ruffians start tormenting Daniel. One day, as Daniel is suffering a beating at the hands of these louts, Mr. Miyagi (Noriyuki "Pat" Morita), an elderly Japanese handyman, comes to his rescue. To Daniel's amazement, Miyagi manages to take down the whole group all by himself using karate. Daniel begs to learn this ancient martial art, and soon Miyagi begins the boy's training, teaching Daniel that there is more to karate than fighting. Through a series of lessons, the wise mentor instills a sense of honor and nobility in his young pupil while preparing him for the ultimate karate showdown. However, as Daniel studies the discipline and art of karate, his enemies are learning a di...