TELLURIDE – It’s that long-awaited Telluride Nothing Festival weekend, and once again, Nugget Building owners Bill and Katrine Formby are donating two days worth of free screenings (Friday, July 16 at 4 and 7 p.m., and Saturday, July 17, at 2, 5 and 8 p.m.) to celebrate the traditional non-festival.
Of the free film this weekend – The Karate Kid, a remake of the 1984 classic, “in some respects a fascinating one, sticking incredibly close to the story of the original, yet including some key differences that certainly make it different on a visual level” – writes film reviewer Eric Goldman (IGN).
In this version, the eponymous Karate Kid, named Dre, is played by 11-year-old Jaden Smith (son of the film’s producers, Will and Jada Pinkett Smith); the story unfolds in a more exotic setting (Dre and his mother move from Detroit to China).
But otherwise, says Goldman, “The script by Christopher Murphey sticks extremely close to the original to a staggering extent. Beat for beat and character for character, there are direct correlations in almost every scene of the film, as Dre meets a cute classmate (Wenwen Han), only to begin getting mercilessly bullied and beaten up by the nasty Cheng (Zhenwei Wang). But lo and behold, that seemingly mild-mannered maintenance man at the back of Dre's apartment building is a kung-fu master, and after saving Dre from another Cheng beat down, begins training him to face his rival at an upcoming tournament.”
As Smith’s sensei, Jackie Chan gives “one of his better performances in this film, including the key scene where a drunk Han reveals his tragic past to Dre,” says Goldman. And Jaden Smith, “just 11 when the film was shot, is a strong young actor who is clearly very comfortable in front of the camera.”
The Karate Kid, shows at the Nugget Theatre, Friday, July 16 at 4 and 7 p.m., and Saturday, July 17, at 2, 5 and 8 p.m. Admission is free.