Viewers might have an idea how the kid in 'The Karate Kid' fares against the bully in this remake of the 1984 film, but in critic land, the quesion is, how does it stand up to the now-iconic original? Pretty well, according to many scribes, who feel that this new version -- starring Jaden Smith as the kid and Jackie Chan as the teacher -- has the right amount of heart and action to compare favorably.

Director Harald Zwart ('The Pink Panther 2' and the Cody Banks movies) draws praise for hitting the same notes as the original, yet a few critics cite Smith's diminutive size as unrealistic for the film's fight scenes. Some also point out that Chan's obvious martial arts ability is a drawback: Part of the appeal of the first one was the surprise of Pat Morita's fighting skills. No such surprise here with Chan in the role, critics say.

This version features Smith (son of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, who are also producers) relocating to China with his mom (Taraji P. Henson). Once there, it's quite a culture shock for the kid, who is smitten by a classmate and gets beaten up by the school bully. Then he meets Chan, who teaches him kung fu, (not karate, despite the film's title).
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