Monthly Archives: August 2014

The Karate Kid (1984) Filming Locations, Part 1

Now that school is finished, we have the opportunity to do some fun things, as well as take a much-needed vacation.  In the next couple of weeks, we will be spending a week in Tahoe, and another week traveling up to Seattle.  That should be a fun trip, but it is a very long drive.

Yesterday, we took a day out, to travel around LA to find some of the sites that were used in the classic 1984 movie, The Karate Kid, starring Ralph Macchio and Pat Morita.  We managed to get around most of the locations, but not all, as LA is a big city, and it takes hours of driving, not to mention battling a lot of traffic. We will save the other locations for another time.  However, it was amazing that many of the locations in the movie, even after thirty years, have been virtually frozen in  time.  I have taken some stills from the movie, so you can see.

The first stop was the South Seas Apartments in Reseda.  We have already commented on the apartment building here, which was the home of the LaRusso’s in the movie, but it was neat to go back there and revisit this awesome location.




This is the South Seas Apartments today.



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This is how the front of the apartment building appeared in the movie.






This is the inside of the building today, as you enter the front gate.  The pool looks a lot better than it did in the movie!  The LaRusso’s apartment (# 20) is up the far stairs, and in the far left-hand corner.



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Here is a shot of the building interior as it was in the movie, where Daniel and Freddy are walking along the pool heading up to his apartment.






Outside Apartment 20.




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Apartment 20 as it appeared in the movie.





As you walk out the side gate of the building, you enter the car parking spaces. This is the side gate today, looking back toward the building.


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This is the side gate as it appeared in the movie.  Miyagi’s workshop was constructed for the movie, filling the parking space directly to the left of the side gate (see above).


IMG_5713To find the beach scenes, we traveled to Leo Carillo State Beach in Malibu. This is the part of the beach today, where the the game of the soccer was played, where Daniel and his friends had a cook-out, and where Daniel took his first beating at the hands of the Cobra Kai.

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This is the same corner of the beach as it appeared in the movie.



Directly overlooking this section of the beach, is where Johnny and the rest of the Cobra Kai’s were riding their motorcycles, pausing in front of the #2 lifeguard tower.  Here is the tower today.


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Here is a shot of that same lifeguard tower, which is clearly seen in the movie.



This is the path, as it looks today, that Johnny and the Cobra Kai’s rode their bikes down, and onto the beach.  The overlooking lifeguard tower can be seen on the left.


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This is the scene in the movie. Notice the lifeguard tower on the left.



We found the school that was used in the movie in Woodland Hills, CA.  It was previously a Junior High School, and was derelict for a time, but now is being used.  Here is how the part of the school looks today


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This is how the same covered walkway as it appeared in the movie.






The school plague that is seen in the movie today.



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The same plague that was clearly seen in the movie.





To find Ali’s house, we had to travel to Encino, a very exclusive and nice part of LA.  Here is Ali’s house today.  Still frozen in time!


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This is the same house as it appeared in the movie.



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Not much has changed with the house, and even the column of bricks that Daniel kicked over as he nervously spoke to Ali’s parents…






is still there.





In the filming of the movie, two Cobra Kai dojos’s were used.  Here is one.  This is the location
 where Daniel and Miyagi went to confront Kreese.  Here is the exterior of the building today.


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Here is the same building as it appeared in the movie.





Posing as a mild-mannered potential customer, I managed to get inside the dojo, which is being used as dojo / fitness center.  This is what is looks like today.


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This is the inside of the dojo as it appeared in the movie.



Stay tuned for the second installment of The Karate Kid Filming Locations.


Four States in Six Days

A few weeks ago, the girls went on a road trip with the Burling family.   The trip started out with a long drive to Tombstone, Arizona, where we spent our time in a small town filled with gift shops, gunfight shows, old buildings, and even a “theme park” name Helldorado where you could play some games such as mini golf, pan for gold, watch a gunfight reenactment and even just enjoy the atmosphere. Being a western fan, Denise has always loved the idea of visiting Tombstone.


After staying there for a night, we continued on to El Paso, Texas. Since we have come all this way to California, we decided we might as well visit Texas! El Paso is a small border town on the edge of Texas, only a few miles from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. We stayed just one night in El Paso, but drove up on a Scenic Route to view most of El Paso, and see some of Mexico. It was cold and foggy that day, but we still managed to get a good view of what was surrounding us. We couldn’t help but take a look at Historic Downtown El Paso. It had a very different feel, but what was familiar, was seeing a Starbucks right across from the parking lot.


On our way to Roswell, New Mexico, the following day, we encountered some difficulty. Just 60 miles from El Paso we were stopped at the Border Control. After a short while, everything was cleared up and we were continuing our journey to Roswell. We stayed two nights in Roswell and saw alot of ‘aliens’. Our friends we travelled with a very much into aliens, so they really wanted to visit Roswell. While we were there we visited the UFO Museum which was rather informative. To top that off we proceeded to Area 51- Alien Zone, where for a couple of dollars per person, we could take some photos with latex aliens all set up with different displays. Surprisingly, that was a ton of fun.


On our last leg of the journey, we spent a night in Williams, Arizona, just to break up the remainder of the trip. In Williams, we explored the small town which was mainly stocked with native Indian souvenirs.


IMG_1241Overall we had an awesome trip, but it was very tiring as we travelled over 2000 miles. We enjoyed getting to see the country more before we head back home to New Zealand.