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Parents' Guide to

The Karate Kid

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

'80s classic is still fun for families with older tweens.

Movie PG 1984 127 minutes
The Karate Kid Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 25 parent reviews

age 5+

I watched it when I was 4

I can't believe the ratings of 11 and 12. Has the world gone crazy?.I have a 6 year old. and I'm going to watch it with him. It's a kids movie. All these recommendations you need to cut by half. If a little kid can't watch Karate Kid then he can't watch any movie. Ridiculous.
6 people found this helpful.
age 10+

Y'all rlly talking about 16+ it's pg

I been watching this since I was 6 a lot of kid movies curse home alone good burger at least they censored it out like wth

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
3 people found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (25 ):
Kids say (83 ):

This movie isn't a slick, angsty coming-of-age drama, but there's so much to just enjoy about it. Shue's Ali is sweet -- especially because she doesn't mind Daniel's working-class background -- but the teens' romance is filler for the central relationship in the movie: that of Daniel and Mr. Miyagi. Not many movies can make multi-generational friendships seem authentic, but Macchio and the late Morita managed to achieve a closeness that was believably touching. When Daniel tells Mr. Miyagi "You're my best friend," it's not awkward -- it's true. Daniel and Mr. Miyagi are a more relatable Luke and Obi Wan or Harry and Dumbledore, and it's that archetypal teacher-hero dynamic that ultimately makes The Karate Kid a winner.

If you say "wax on!" to anyone born in the late '60s or the '70s, they'll immediately answer "wax off!" -- that's how big a cultural phenomenon The Karate Kid was in the '80s. Like Ferris Bueller's Day Off or Dirty Dancing, this is just one of those special, mid-'80s classics from which fans can quote countless scenes. And despite some dated details (the big hair, the track suits, the funny-looking cars and wardrobe), the story holds up remarkably well, because Daniel is a high-school Everyman. He's not Gossip Girl rich or Zac Efron handsome or extraordinarily gifted in any way; he's just a new kid in town who's willing to train hard, actually get to know an older Japanese man most teenage guys would have made fun of, and better himself in the process. Oh, and he does a killer job at winning the girl, the championship, and the hearts of moviegoers everywhere.

Movie Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

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