What happens when you put the most annoying main character in a film franchise up against the most pathetic villain ever? Well, you get the Karate Kid III. For some reason I felt the need to punish myself and watch this horrible piece of shit. I think its because I keep noticing that the first one has been on TV quite a lot lately. Let’s get this going. Also, if reading spoilers for the Karate Kid III is a problem for you then you have some serious issues to work out.
We open up with a montage with clips from the first two movies. I don’t need to see this. It’s like wanting to re-live a painful shit. This movie has little in common with part 2 & relates directly to the events in part 1.
Kobra Kai (the karate school from the first film) is no more. John Kreese (the teacher from Part I) is broke and his dojo hasn’t had any students in months thanks to Mr Miyagi putting him to shame and Daniel beating his students in the tournament. Kreese looks like he is thinking about eating a bullet as he looks at all his unpaid bills.
Kreese drives over the the house (mansion) of his old army buddy Terry Silver to hand him the keys to the dojo. Terry is the founder of Kobra Kai and also the head of a company that dumps nuclear waste illegally. If dumping nuclear waste illegally could give me a house like that, sign me up! I love how Terry couldn’t just be a more evil Kobra Kai master Sensei. No..no..no that’s not good enough. They had to try and up the ante and be like “well he dumps nuclear waste and that’s bad too!” Of course, he also has a pony tail.this is still the 80’s & no 80’s movie is complete without a bad guy sporting one. Kreese tells Terry he is going away but will pay him back once he gets a new job. Terry doesn’t like seeing his buddy down and wants to help him get revenge. He learns the story of how Miyagi and Daniel got the best of him. Funny how Terry obviously doesn’t pay much attention to the Kobra Kai business that he owns or else he would know the dojo isn’t making money and would also know this story already! Kreese reminds me of a little boy crying to his mommy. Terry brushes away his tears and sends him on an all expense paid vacation for a few weeks while he forms a plan to sabotage Daniel and Miyagi.
Meanwhile, Daniel (Ralph Macchio) and Mr Miyagi return from Japan..or is it China? Lets just go with Asia. When Daniel arrives at his home do you think he is greeted with hugs and kisses from mommy? Fuck no! He arrives home to find the apartment he and his mother lived in has been torn down and his mom is nowhere to be found. The neighbor informs Daniel to call his mom collect and gives him a number where she can be reached. It turns out, she is taking care of a sick uncle. I would be like “what the hell! It would have been nice to tell me that I’m FUCKING homeless!” Seriously, couldn’t she have contacted him while he was overseas and said something? Could the writers really not think of a better way for Miyagi and Daniel to be stuck together again? So Mr Miyagi who I am sure was looking forward to a break from Daniel gets stuck with him for an even longer period of time due to some shitty parenting. Thank god Mr Miyagi has lots of discipline because I would have killed Daniel in his sleep long ago. Daniel is without a doubt the most annoying franchise character in the history of film. Yes, even worse than Jar Jar Binks! Daniel bitches, whines, cries, and gets his ass kicked through three films. Everything out of his mouth is annoying and whiny. “but Mr Miyagi” “hey Mr Miyagi” “why Mr Miyagi?” It’s Miyagi this and Miyagi that. UGHHH!!!
Mr Miyagi has his own problems and needs to get rid of his bonsai trees because he is jobless and can’t take care of them anymore. I don’t know much about bonsai trees but are they really that needy of a tree that you can’t afford to take care of just one? Who was taking care of them while you and Daniel were in Asia? Daniel feels sorry for Miyagi & has a look on his face like he is about to do something stupid.
Terry is riding in his limo and has been talking on the phone with Kreese as he enjoys his R&R and happy ending massages. It must be nice to be a failure but have rich friends who will send you on vacation. This is where we learn Terry’s revenge plan. Drum roll please. Terry plans to intimidate Daniel into leaving Miyagi and train with him to defend his title. Then he will make Daniel feel super invincible and confident but is really just teaching him all the wrong moves so he will lose. Daniel is definitely stupid enough to fall for this idiotic plan. You could probably sell the kid some magic beans while your at it. Terry and his staff pick out a different car and wardrobe so he doesn’t look rich and can blend in.
While Daniel is excruciatingly annoying, Terry is just pathetic. This is a guy who is essentially taking time away from running his multi million dollar company so he can help a friend by sabotaging a teenager in a karate tournament. When you think about it like that, it’s just sad. Get more friends Terry!
Meanwhile at the Miyagi compound Daniel comes barging in with that stupid smile on his face. The idiot took the money that was intended for his college education and used it to lease a shop so Miyagi can fulfill his dream of opening a bonsai tree store. This kid is so stupid. Did you do any market research to assure that this business has a shot Daniel? Is there a demand for this? Of course the shop is a run down piece of garbage on the shitty side of town. Clearly business wouldn’t have been you major.
While Terry is taking his afternoon bubble bath and smoking a cigar, we are introduced to a new karate bad boy named Mike Barnes. Terry’s plan includes having Barnes woop Daniel’s ass in the tournament. In return Barnes will get 25% ownership in the new chain of Kobra Kai dojos that Terry plans to open. Barnes renegotiates and gets 50%. Woopie freakin do.
We get a little education about bonsai trees from Miyagi. Daniel doesn’t seem to understand a damn thing he is saying. What a shock. Miyagi makes the mistake of telling Daniel about some super awesome bonsai tree that he took from his homeland and planted it deep down in a nearby gorge where almost nobody can get it. This information will be used later. Daniel gets a letter about the upcoming tournament but Miyagi won’t sponsor him and sign it because Miyagi finds it useless as a sport.
As luck would have it, there is a pottery place across the street. Daniel goes to check it out and meets Jessica. (Robyn Lively) He talks a little bit about the shop and what kind of pots he is looking for blah blah blah. Jessica is lonely, bored and desperate for attention. This is obvious do to the fact the she waists no time in asking Daniel when she will see him again. Long story short, they make plans for later that night. Daniel goes back to his shop across the street with a stupid grin on his face to gloat about how he just scored a date to Miyagi. Miyagi then knocks Daniel off his high horse by handing him back the tournament application still unsigned. Daniel throws a mini shit fit.
Later that night while Daniel is getting ready for his big date with Jessica. Terry sneaks into the home looking for some dirt and information on Miyagi and Daniel that he might be able to use for his big stupid plan. He finds Miyagi’s medal from the war and a flier about the opening of the bonsai shop. Terry hides as Miyagi and Daniel approach the room. Daniel tells Miyagi that he isn’t going to fight and sets the application on fire then throws it in the fireplace. They walk off. It turns out Terry has been hiding in the chimney and starts coughing. Was this an attempt at humor?
Time for Daniel and Jessica to go on a date. Lets see what moves ya have kid. I guess we will never know what he was planning because Jessica shoots down Daniel in a matter of minutes by explaining how she is planning on getting back together with her ex boyfriend when she goes home to Ohio and she came on strong because she has been in L.A. for two months and hasn’t made any friends. What a tease! Sorry Daniel. So much for pulling out the old penis in the popcorn trick at the local cinema tonight. Daniel plays it cool and tells her that he will be her first friend but deep down he is probably pissed. He then brings her across the street to meet Miyagi. I wonder if this was his original plan? Or did he shift ideas at the last second after she dropped that bomb? If his original plan was to just take her across the street for her to meet an elderly Asian man then he needs some serious pointers on where to take a girl.
Miyagi is on his way out the door as Daniel introduces her. Daniel then brings her into the shop. Ohhh, I see where your going with this Daniel. He then tries to wooo her by talking about his karate experience. Would this have impressed a women back in the 80’s? Even then, I have the feeling it was still considered dorky. All the sudden karate bad boy Barns and his sidekick named Snake crash the party. This might be 1989 but its still an 80’s movie. So far this movie at least meets the 80’s movie quota for necessary villain qualities. Terry has a pony tail and Barns has a stupid annoying sidekick who isn’t tough, but has a big mouth. Barnes is pissed that Daniel isn’t entering the tournament because his financial future is dependent on beating his ass, so he plans to intimidate Daniel into joining. Snake pulls Barnes back from doing any damage and Daniel is told to sleep on it.
The next morning Terry Silver arrives dressed in regular close and interrupts Miyagi and Daniels morning kata. Silver tells them how word of Kreese being a dumbass just got to Korea and he wanted to apologize on his masters behalf. He explains how he came back to America so he could help Kreese regain his balance but when he arrived it was to late and Kreese died of a broken heart because he lost all of his students. I must say, that’s a stupid way to explain someones death. Terry leaves. Daniel and Miyagi go back to kata and feel slightly bad about the news.
Later that night Jessica arrives at the shop with some mac & cheese to share with Daniel. Daniel practically has an orgasm over one of the pots she made for the bonsai trees. Daniel then gives her tickets to a night club for her last day in L.A.. Did night clubs ever do this? I mean, if there isn’t a show did you ever need to buy tickets to just get into one? Barnes, Snake and the other sidekick arrive again. Daniel is still not willing to sign the application. Dude, just sign it and don’t show up! They start trashing the place. A little fight breaks out. In the end, Barnes beats up Daniel and kicks Jessica in the stomach. I would be shocked that Barnes hit a girl, but since Daniel reminds me of one it’s all the same to me. Miyagi saves the day with some moves and the bad guys speed off.
Daniel hops in the truck with Miyagi as they drive home from the store. Daniel is pissed about what just happened. Miyagi could give a flying fuck and starts singing. This just irritates Daniel. They arrive back home to discover that all the Bonsai trees that are awaiting to be transferred to the store have been stolen. A tournament application hangs from a piece of string on a workbench. Miyagi still keeps his cool and decides to go fishing. Daniel decides to hop back in the truck and drive to the police station.
I guess the police laughed at Daniel about wanting to press charges against Barnes and didn’t do a damn thing. So, assault & theft just won’t cut it? With no trees Daniel and Miyagi have nothing to sell accept themselves on a street corner. Daniel has Jessica come with him to retrieve Miyagi’s tree at the bottom of the gorge. His plan is to sell it because it’s worth a lot of money apparently. How is Daniel going to get to the bottom of this thing? Oh, that’s right! Jessica just happens to be skilled at repelling also! What a coincidence. I love when writers do this as a lazy way of getting around shit. Oh, you need pottery? There is a girl right across the street who makes that. Oh, you need to get down that steep cliff? Well, that same girl knows how to do that too! This flick is asking me to believe in fate just a little to much. They rappel down and Daniel looses his footing. Then he panics like an idiot. Jessica steadies him & they continue. They pull the tree out but then Jessica looses her footing for a moment and the plant falls to the bottom of the gorge and into the salt water. Oh no! Ugh, I can’t believe one of the most intense scene so far involves two people rappelling down a cliff quickly to save a stupid bonsai tree. Wow, look at them rappel down quickly. All the sudden they are both frigin experts.
They reach the bottom and rinse the salt water off the roots. As they are doing that someone at the top starts pulling the ropes up. It’s Barnes and his two butt buddy sidekicks who won’t drop the ropes back down unless Daniel signs the application. If he doesn’t he plans to leave them down there and let the tide take them. Barnes is full of shit. I don’t believe for a second that he would commit murder. I’m sure there would still be plenty more opportunities to get Daniel to sign between now and the tournament. What good is Daniel to Barnes if he is dead? Daniel signs the application, but will only give it to Barnes if they pull Jessica and himself up. Wow Daniel. What a deal you made. Barnes and his crew pull them up but stop right before the lip of the cliff and take the application from Daniel. Barnes now wants the tree and threatens to drop Jessica if Daniel doesn’t hand it over. Daniel hands the tree over but then like an idiot stresses how important the tree is and to be careful with it. Why would you do this!? I mean he is most likely going to fuck the tree up anyway but at least you gain a shred of hope that he won’t totally destroy it if you act like you don’t give a shit about it, but since Daniel just had to express how important this tree is, Barnes snaps the trunk like a wishbone. What did you expect doofus!?
Daniel rushes into the bonsai shop with the tree in his hands. Miyagi drops his broom as he notices Daniel is holding his busted tree and rushes over to take care of it like its a sick relative. Daniel apologizes & Miyagi forgives him like he always does.
Terry puts forward the next step in his “brilliant” plan to destroy Daniel. While Daniel is doing some moves in the backyard, Barnes shows up and picks a fight with Daniel for going to the police. Terry just happens to conveniently show up and intervenes. Barnes and Terry stage a fake fight. Barnes ends up running away. He then shows Daniel some sweep moves and offers to help train him.
Daniel hurries over to the bonsai shop with a hard on for Terry and acting like he just gained tons of knowledge from learning a single move. He asks Miyagi to teach him sweep techniques. Miyagi then grabs a broom and explains how to use it. Daniel doesn’t find the humor in it and drives off like a frustrated teenage girl who was just given a curfew.
Since Miyagi won’t train him Daniel goes to the Cobra Kai dojo to take Terry up on his offer. Terry tells Daniel he developed a training method that he calls “quick silver” Get it? His name is Terry Silver. Isn’t that frigin genius! Anyway, rule or bullet point #1 is “If a man can’t stand he can’t fight” That’s real deep Terry. I never would have known that. Daniel and Terry walk over to a training dummy made up of wooden 2×4’s. Daniel dings up his foot pretty good then goes home hobbling.
Daniel tries to hide his wound from Miyagi but Miyagi is to smart for that and gives Daniel some magical healing foot powder that probably isn’t approved by the FDA. The next day Daniel is back on is feet at Cobra Kai for more punishment with the stupid 2×4 dummy but this time on the chest because “if a man can’t breathe he can’t fight” Terry then slinks away behind a wall where he snickers and laughs like a school girl at Daniel.
On the third day of Christmas Daniel learns if “a man can’t fight if he can’t see” Terry has Daniel go back to the 2×4 training dummy. This time Daniel gets bloody knuckles from punching the wooden face that has a photo of “Bad Boy Barnes” face taped to it. Daniel that gets pumped up and breaks all the limbs on the dummy. They both get excited. Terry points out and Daniel agrees that this makes him ready for the tournament.
It’s Jessica’s last night in LA and she and Daniel are off to the club. Last chance to make a move Daniel. This club looks more like a middle school dance.
Terry just happens to be at the club also and offers a guy some money to pick a fight with Daniel when the time is right. Terry “bumps into” Daniel. Daniel gets all excited. Seriously, Daniel gets way to enthusiastic sometimes when he sees Terry. The guy Terry bribed a few moments ago makes his move and says something to Jessica and pushes Daniel. Daniel then punches the guy in the face and breaks his nose. That’s awesome Daniel. You look like a badass! You’ll definitely be getting laid tonight. Wait, no! what the F#@K!!!? Jessica doesn’t approve? She turns to Daniel and asks him if he has gone nuts. Why are you lying Jessica? We all know that turned you on! Terry and Daniel make a dash out of the club before security can stop him. Terry is happy that Daniel just reacted without thinking. Daniel isn’t happy about what he has become and runs off. In Daniels defense, the guy did put a hand on him first.
Daniel shows up at Jessica’s place to apologize but she isn’t very happy with him. I still think she is full of shit. Daniel explains that it “wasn’t him.” After the stupid apology, Jessica forgives him and insists that once he decides to kiss and make up with Miyagi and the guy whose nose he broke, everything will be sunshine and rainbows again. Daniel tries to get in contact with the guy whose nose he broke but that’s a no go. Miyagi shows Daniel that the bonsai tree that Barnes snapped will survive because of its strong roots. Daniel realizes he needs to forgive himself. Wow, lots of self discovery in a non-physical way. Daniel then takes off to visit Terry at the dojo so he can tell Terry that he can no longer train with him. He arrives and breaks the news to Terry and tells him that he has decided to not compete in the tournament. At this point Terry drops the act and reveals to Daniel his true motives. Barnes emerges from the back room and Kreese jumps out like he is trying to jump scare a bunch of teenage girls at a haunted house attraction.
Daniel doesn’t want to fight. Just as it looks like this trio of bad guys is about beat Daniel to death then stash him in a dumpster somewhere, super Miyagi appears out of nowhere and puts a bit of hurt of the bad guys. As Daniel and Miyagi are walking away Terry decides to taunt them by saying how he plans to open Kobra Kai dojos all over California. Ya, you tell them Terry. Great comeback Terry after just getting your ass handed to you by an elderly man. Miyagi now agrees to train Daniel. You know what this means right? It’s 80’s movie training montage time!
It’s the day of the tournament. To no surprise, it’s Barnes against Daniel for the championship. Terry, Barnes and Kreese are on one side of the ring. Daniel and Miyagi are on the other. Before the match, Terry walks to the center of the ring and gives a speech to the crowd about good karate values. It turns out Terry financed the tournament. So he could decided to blow a midget at center ring if he wanted to. After his speech Terry walks over to Barnes for the final game plan. He tells Barnes to gain a point and then lose a point intentionally to penalty by performing an illegal move. This will keep the score 0-0 until they go to sudden death where Barnes will win. I guess Daniel isn’t even capable of scoring a single point against this guy? Accept for discipline, Barnes is superior in every way possible compared to Daniel but damn! Terry’s plan is way to over confident because its predicated on Daniel not managing to score once. What if Daniel managed to get a point somehow? Anyway everything seems to be going according to plan for team Barnes. Daniel is getting his ass kicked and crying like he just had his lunch stolen from a playground bully. With the score 0-0 and about to go into sudden death. Daniel spends most of his one minute break period on the floor of the ring whining about how its over and he can’t win. Miyagi gives him some words of wisdom about karate being inside of him. Basically, its a nice way of saying “stop being a pussy and get up!” Thank god Jessica already left for home because this is pitiful.
With break time over, Daniel and Barnes go to center ring. The referee signals for the fight to begin. The second sudden death starts, Daniel starts doing some calm kata moves that somehow magically confuse Barnes. I don’t get it. Barnes has been aggressive the whole time. How is it Daniel suddenly goes into an almost standing comatose state and it throws Barnes off? Mental note, if I ever get into a fight just start calmly swooshing my arms around and stare deep into my opponents eyes. I’m sure that will make them back away. Barnes looks off to the side at Terry like “now what?” Why Barnes? Why? Just do what you always do and go at him now!! I guess you could compare what Daniel is doing to a baseball pitcher and his windup, but this isn’t f*#ki@g! baseball! Terry is yelling at Barnes to get the point. Barnes gets into a stance and then charges with a punch. Daniel catches the punch then flips Barnes onto the ground and lands a clean hit. All the time that Terry wasted trying to sabotage Daniel goes down the shitter. -THE END-
Overall Score 5 / 10
+ watching Daniel get his ass kicked is always entertaining
+ Jessica is played by Blake Lively’s older sister Robyn Lively which makes me fantasize about Blake Lively
+ Mr Miyagi is hilarious at times.
– Takes a while to get going
– Terry is the most pathetic bad guy ever
– Daniel whining and complaining all the time
– Story very similar to Part I