The Karate Kid Collection
The Karate Kid film series waxes its way onto DVD with this fine DVD collection from Columbia Home Entertainment. This set contains all four action-packed Mr. Miyagi movies, which have each been given a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer, along with various sound options that certainly get the job done, though don't expect too many bells and whistles in that category (this is the Karate Kid, after all!). The first film has been given the most attention, with two 20-minute making-ofs that feature extensive cast and crew interviews, along with behind-the-scenes footage. Other featurettes include an interview with the fight choreographer along with a sit-down interview with composer Bill Conti as he talks you through the score. Aside from another featurette on bonsai trees, there's an extremely fun full-length audio commentary from director John G. Avildsen, writer Robert Kamen and actors Ralph Macchio and Pat Morita. Between a healthy dose of laughs, the motley bunch make their way through the film and manage to entertain and dish out stories at the same time, giving the track an unexpected light quality that is certain to be a surprise to those not expecting much. The sequels don't get too much love, outside of a vintage featurette for Part II, along with previews for the first and second film. With a low price point, this collection is actually a pretty good deal, considering that no one in their right mind would probably pony up the dough for the third or fourth flick.