Plot Details: This opinion reveals major details about the movie's plot.
Many seem to think that the first Karate Kid movie was the best in the series but I would humbly disagree in saying that it pales in comparison to its 1986 sequel. In saying so, I felt that the storyline in the first installment was nothing more than a simple rehash of similar plots from old Chinese Kung-Fu flicks like Jackie Chan's Drunken Master. It was only during the second movie that we began to see the whole picture in a wider perspective. Karate Kid II branches out with sub-plots involving both Miyagi & Daniel-San rather than focusing on just the latter alone.
This time, old man Miyagi ( Pat Morita ) must return to his ancestral home of Okinawa after receiving news of his father being gravely ill. Daniel-San ( Ralph Macchio ), still suffering from a broken heart after being dumped by his old girlfriend from the first movie, agrees to tag along all the way to Okinawa where he expectedly finds love with a Japanese girl named Kumiko ( Tamlyn Tomita ). Things start going wrong when both Miyagi & Daniel-San are rudely greeted by an evil looking Chozen ( Yuji Okumoto ) upon their arrival in Okinawa. It turns out that Chozen is a nephew of Miyagi's former best friend, Sato ( Danny Kamekona ), who later became his sworn enemy after an incident involving an old flame.
While Miyagi has his hands full with Sato, Daniel-San must deal with the movie's chief villain, Chozen. Chozen is the typical martial arts bully that you'd love to hate, similar to Bolo Yeung's character in Bloodsport. We see the animosity between both Chozen & Daniel-San building up throughout the movie, finally ending with their climatic showdown at an abandoned Japanese castle towards the end. There is terrific chemistry between Daniel-San and his new Japanese chick, Kumiko as the film lets us in on a few sugary-sweet scenes involving the both of them. Miyagi's consolation comes in the form of his old flame Yukie ( Nobu McCarthy ), whom he had left behind some 40 years ago after a bitter dispute with his former best friend, Sato. As if that wasn't enough, poor Miyagi must also cope with the death of his father as well as Daniel-San's problem with Chozen.
While the first movie was all about standing up for yourself and beating the bully, the second was clearly about honor and we do get to see a fair share of it in both Miyagi & Daniel San. It's amazing to see how Miyagi still manages to hold his calm, much like David Carradine's character in Kung-Fu, even when severely pressured by Sato into an uncompromising situation. This film depicts clearly, what martial arts is all about, unlike most other flicks where there is no mention of its true values. Karate Kid II is in my opinion the best in the series. It had a unique storyline unlike any other similar themed flicks as well as a killer music score featuring Chicago's Peter Cetera. I agree with others in saying that it would have made a great finale with Miyagi returning to his roots & Daniel_San living happily ever after with his new Japanese girlfriend. Too bad they had to come up with the awful part III, which ruined everything this movie had built upon. Overall grade: A
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Viewing Format: VHS
Video Occasion: Good Date Movie
Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children up Ages 8