Saturday, June 19, 2010

Movie Review....Karate Kid (2010)

A bunch of us went to see 'Karate Kid' this morning in the Galway Omniplex. I won 10 tickets for a special out-of-hours preview before it's Irish release next week. The cinema was packed to the rafters with young and old alike...on our team we had myself, Neen, Neen's brother and sister Antony and Shauna, Shauna's friends Kelly and Brendan, my cousin and godson Mark and Ethan, and finally Neen's cousins Tommy and Christopher. Ages ranged from approx. 8-15. As for Neen and I we are naturally a smidge older.

I am a fan of Jackie Chan and proudly one of the many who simply love his particular brand of kungfuey goodness! 'Rush Hour' was a favorite of mine as a teen. As for Jaden Smith. He and his father rocked 'Pursuit of Happyness'- a film I highly recommend, so I was looking forward to this film a lot...

Gotta say I was really impressed with both the movie and the respective performances from Chan and Smith. Granted the film was predictable, but in truth most children's films are. There is a very strict formula to follow and only the brave or ignorant stray very far from the standard story arc and pace.

I am very aware that films of this nature, unnecessary remakes in particular are bombarded with negative reviews throughout the web immediately upon their release. As if their very existence is an insult to the movie going public. In truth the director Harald Zwart didn't stand a chance which I believe is unfair!

This version of 'Karate Kid' was devised for a young modern audience. It's their opinions that truly matter, and our group loved it. Neen and I were sitting in the row behind the munckins (with the benefit of high ground and 2 pairs of eagle eyes, we were prepared to step in should there be any tomfoolery!) Bar two emotionally "gooey" minutes before the third and final action packed act all young eyes were firmly fixed on the screen for the the entire picture. I was shocked, no toilet breaks or restless bums. They loved it! Films of this sort serve two primary purposes... 1. Update (not replace) the original and 2. Introduce a new generation to the wonderful art of Kung Fu. In that crowd of 200+ I am quite confident that at least 1 kid was inspired. At least 1 kid went home bright eyed and punching the air shouting "Please mom can I learn Kung Fu...I promise I wont practice on my sister"...

My advise. Give the film a chance. Bring the kids, buy some over priced popcorn you might just be surprised. Rent the original too if you fancy, make a family night of it...

And to ye skeptics out there, you know who who are... you with the Atari t-shirt sitting in your moms basement illegally downloading all eight seasons of Magnum P.I. Remember you were once a kid too so go easy with the rotten tomatoes. Nothing will ever beat moms home cooking, Christmas as a kid, or the films from your child hood. This is a new film for a new generation and we loved it! 8 out of 10!

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