Picture from The Karate Kid
Overall B

New Jersey native Daniel (Ralph Macchio) has trouble fitting when he moves to California. As bullying problems escalate, the teen turns to an unlikely friend, Mr. Miyagi (Pat Morita), who mentors him in martial arts for self-defense.

Violence C+
Sexual Content A-
Profanity C
Substance Use C-

Talk to your kids about…

The Karate Kid

Mr. Miyagi agrees to teach Daniel karate, but instead has him doing household chores. How does the elderly man respond when the boy questions his methods? What skills and character traits does Daniel learn because of his labor?

Kreese has his students recite: "Strike First. Strike Hard. No Mercy." How does this statement of philosophy differ from Mr. Miyagi’s view of karate? Still, both of these teachers gain the loyalty of their pupils. Why? What motivates the obedience in each group?

According to the movie, Daniel leaves New Jersey in September, has his major altercation with Johnny on Halloween night (October 31) and then competes in the karate tournament in December. Is this a realistic timeline for someone to develop the level of martial arts skill depicted in this film?

The bullying Daniel endures is very serious. How should such abuse really be handled? Do you think it is realistic to assume the aggression will stop if the boys take their grievances into a competition environment? Ignoring what the script suggests, what would likely happen to Daniel if he won such a tournament? What would happen if he lost?

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