As I mentioned in my review of Big Trouble in Little China, the inspiration for video game Mortal Kombat came from Big Trouble in Little China move itself. Mortal Kombat video game soon became very popular and someone decided to create a movie to monetize that success even more. I don’t know who it was but that was the best idea ever in my opinion because I remember playing Mortal Kombat 2 alone and with my friends; fighting to see who is better, or trying to get to the difficult and almost impossible last fight against the evil emperor. Only a few of us were able to do it, and it was only done a few times, and I don’t think anyone beat the game. So when I heard there’s a movie that was based on the first game, I was nothing short of excited, especially if we can see the evil emperor getting beat. But the emperor is barely in the movie. He’s in the sequel, and I don’t suggest watching the sequel.
Having said all that, when looking at the movie which I may be biased to, it’s important to keep a clear head, but I still think this is the best video game based movie ever made simply because the source material had no story to inspire.
The game lets you choose 1 of 12 or so characters (at least the second game did) and what a player would do is fight a different opponent on a different set until he came to the end where he would fight the emperor himself – if he was lucky and skilled enough to get to him, let alone defeat him. As mentioned earlier – almost impossible.
So, on to the movie. Mortal Kombat starts by introducing each of the main characters and giving us some of their background stories, which are then connected through the main villain, who sets us up for a tournament that we’re not sure if it’s even real or if its consequences are as serious as few of the characters believe they are.
Another thing that makes Mortal Kombat awesome is its score that is one of the best scores ever made for a movie, and will stay in your head for days. The whole soundtrack is great, and I’m going to link the video with the score instead of the trailer.
The movie has a great variety of sets, practical effects and CGI which blend in well together and make movie watchable. The effort was really put into making the sets look good, and it was definitely worth the effort because the plot of the movie is not on planet Earth, and even though some of the sets look like places on Earth, we still have a lot of weird and unusual scenery that puts us in a different dimension.
Though the main cast is not memorable, and the women are stunning, these people show some martial arts skills, though how professional they are I’m not sure of, they make us believe they know what they’re doing while at the same time copying the moves straight from the game.
Christopher Lambert brings star power to help reputation of this movie as a legitimate one, and though his role is not the biggest one, his character is important to the overall plot. I love Christopher Lambert, and he it’s great having him in Mortal Kombat.
The villains of the movie are somewhat unique, though they are general bad guys who want to destroy their Earthly opponents so they can rule the Earth, or serve their evil master in order for him to rule the world. Scorpion and Sub-Zero are two of the most memorable ones, and definitely the most popular ones in the game, with Scorpion being the more unique of the two. They also have a “twin” Reptile, who wasn’t as developed as his “brothers”, but he was present in few of the important fights for the plot.
The overall feel of the movie is something campy mixed with something strange, with a dose of adventure and uncertainty, while at the same time we know we’re supposed to have fun with this movie with its great score, believable characters, and an over-used plot synopsis. To say that Mortal Kombat is a masterpiece would be an overstatement, but it is a great video game based movie that will entertain you for an entire 90 minutes.
I give Mortal Kombat 8/10 because it is a movie you can enjoy, especially if you like martial arts movies, or cheesy movies with one liners that won’t make you cringe like you’d expect them to. With that in mind, prepare yourself for the trip, and enter the world of Mortal Kombat.