Does it seem a bit lazy to remake "The Karate Kid" minus the karate? Now everybody's kung fu fighting — fast as lightning, rib-cracking action that makes the 1984 original seem as rough as "Joanie Loves Chachi."
Dre (Jaden Smith) reluctantly moves from Detroit to Beijing when his mom (wonderful Taraji P. Henson) gets a job transfer. Within hours of arrival, Dre is smitten by a lovely young musician (Wenwen Han) but gets the mu shu kicked out of him for talking to her. Cheng (Zhenwei Wang) and his friends do a pretty scary job of bullying Dre all over town.
What luck the maintenance man in Dre's building is none other than Jackie Chan, er, "Mr. Han." There's a fantastic fight sequence where Han takes out Kid Vicious, turning his bully buddies on each other as weapons.
Like a good little grasshopper, Dre learns old-school kung fu from Mr. Han — cue the requisite "Rocky"-style musical training montages with the Great Wall of China as a backdrop.