#721 The Karate Kid Part II (1986)

The work for the sequel started in a record time, only ten days after the first movie was shot and it seems like a story the makers wanted to tell to complete the first movie. In The Karate Kid Part II the duo travels to Okinawa, and this time around it’s Daniel steps up to support his friend Miyagi who finds himself face to face with things he thought he’d left in his past.

Even if the sequel is weaker than the first installation, I have to compliment the production team for taking the franchise to a new direction instead of playing it safe and repeating everything seen in the first movie, which is the case more than often in these series.

Shot in Hawaii, the decorated setting is carefully reconstructed to pass as a small Okinawan village and these beautiful pacific backgrounds add much depth to the kata training sequences. Similarly to the previous movie there’s not a lot of actual hand to hand combat going on here and in the few selected fights we see I have to say that Ralph Macchio’s credibility as the undisputed karate master still requires quite a stretch of imagination

If the previous Karate Kid was a movie about friendship, in Part II the theme is love. The two very different relationships between Miyagi and Yukie, and Daniel and Kumiko, under the pacific paradise island are portrayed with fondness. The relationship between Daniel and Miyagi also deepens on multiple levels, and Mr. Miyagi gains some new dimensions when his integrity and honor are faced with themes of loss, shame, love and even pettiness.

Pat Morita’s portrayal here is nothing short of awe inspiring.

80s-o-meter: 85%

Total: 81%