3.0, United States/Canada

The Karate Kid

2010 / Harald Zwart > Call it The Karate Kid or as it would have been more aptly titled The Kung Fu Kid, the fact remains that Jaden Smith’s genetically passed-on charm and charisma doesn’t make up for his near-farcical martial arts techniques (especially in comparison to many of the young Chinese actors). But if we can excuse that, the film works as a modern immigration tale: How do young Americans, especially a minority, moving to China come of age? Christopher Murphey’s screenplay has enough twists on genre conventions to justify the remake, though it fails to take advantage of deeper intercultural understanding by simply glossing over most conflicts.