Friday, June 11, 2010

Me and The Karate Kid Film Release

When The Karate Kid, directed by John G. Avildsen was first released on 22th June 1984, I had not even come out from my mother’s womb. Over a quarter of a century later, Harald Zwart stepped in Avildsen's place to direct the remake of the movie. Both film versions share almost the same plot. If Avildsen’s directed version sets in 1980s and also in the country of America, Zwart’s film sets in the postmodern world and takes place in China and partially in the States. Most of the incidents in Zwart’s remake version are adopted from Avildsen’s movie, starting from Dre Parker and his mother’s transfer to China to the former’s experience while seeing Mr. Han and a number more to list till Dre’s victory over his opponent, Cheng in the final bout of a kungfu competition. If Miyagi calls Daniel LaRusso as Daniel-san, Han addresses Dre Parker with the name Xiao Dre.

In spite of all the similarities, there are actually some changes made to adapt to the different time frames and circumstances in both movies. At least one can notice the use of sophisticated gadgets like mp3 handphones in the remake movie compared to Avildsen’s version where in the 80s, those gadgets were not popularly used. Besides, Japanese karate is taught by Miyagi to Daniel in contrast to Chinese kungfu which is learned by Dre from Han. During both protagonists’ bouts against their respective opponents, even though both are injured and they stand on their single legs, Miyagi tells Daniel to focus but Han does not say anything to encourage Dre. Daniel eventually lands his kick to Johnny’s (the antagonist of the original film) chin while Dre kicks on the top of Cheng’s head to bring him down.

When the remake of The Karate Kid was released yesterday, its tickets were sold like hot cakes. I had to miss two occasions to watch this film with my brother before I could grab the tickets to watch it at Cathay Cineplex in JB City Square. Both of us had to sit at the first-row seats because most of the back seats were occupied by other movie freaks.

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