Jaden Smith takes over the title role from Ralph Macchio. He plays Dre, who moves to China with his mom and promptly gets his butt kicked. As luck would have it, the maintenance man at his new apartment complex is JACKIE FUCKING CHAN! After a couple of chats and a rousing sequence where Chan puts the smackdown on a bunch of kids attacking his ass, Dre learns the ways of kung fu from the guy who changes the washers. Smith has some major martial arts skills, and I’m convinced he could kick Ralph Macchio’s ass. By the time Dre faces off with his opponents during the big kung fu tournament finale, you really believe Smith has the goods to kick all the asses in the house. The remake is quite similar to the original in plot, but the martial arts stuff is superior. It’s just more convincing watching a kid get some chops from Jackie Chan than Arnold from Happy Days. Pat Morita was a fine actor, but he was no Jackie Chan when it came to smashing heads together.

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