Director: Simon McQuoid
Screenwriter: Greg Russo, Dave Callaham
Starring: Lewis Tan, Jessica McNamee, Josh Lawson
Genre: Fantasy, Action
Runtime: 110 Minutes
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by: Pearl
MMA fighter Cole Young, accustomed to taking a beating for money, is unaware of his heritage-or why Outworld’s Emperor Shang Tsung has sent his best warrior, to hunt Cole down. Fearing for his family’s safety, Cole goes in search of Sonya Blade at the direction of a Special Forces Major who bears the same strange dragon marking Cole was born with. Soon, he finds himself at the temple of an Elder God, who grants sanctuary to those who bear the mark. Here, Cole trains with experienced warriors as he prepares to stand with Earth’s greatest champions against the enemies of Outworld in a high stakes battle for the universe. – Written by Warner Brothers
Video Game based movies do not have a great track record. And while this is a vast improvement on the 1995 offering, that does not make it a top tier movie. Let’s start with the positives. So, the film is obviously going to utilise the violent and gory nature of the video games that it is based off of, and for the most part this aspect I handled pretty well. Sure the blood and violence does feel a little gratuitous at times, but you wouldn’t want them to water down those fatalities that the game is so well known for. Also the martial art and fighting sequences are well shot and well-choregraphed, so definitely no complaints there.
The visual effects were definitely a massive step up from what was available in the 90s, and were pretty convincing to look at. A few times they looked a little cheap and obviously fake, but it is a very rare occasion when you can’t spot at least a few visual effects slip ups, so I am not going to rag on that too bad.
Now the negatives. There is basically no set up for the plot. Cole has everything explained to him in about twenty seconds, swallows they whole thing with no complaint, and is ready to follow two random stragers to the other side of the world at the drop of a hat. If you know only nothing, or like me, only the very basics of the world of Mortal Kombat, the film doesn’t really clarify anything for you. You are basically thrown in at the deep end and expected to work out what is going on. The plot was definitely the weakest point of the film. None of the caracters are really given any stories, or backgrounds past passing comments, especially those from the ‘Outworld.’ And everyone seems to be too good at everything far too quickly.
I can’t however say that this film isn’t entertaining, I had a great time watching it. It is just the right amount of silly, mindless entertainment that I was looking for. Not all films need to be award winners, sometimes, you just wanna have a bit of fun, and that’s what this is. Nothing more. Nothing Less.
‘Mortal Kombat’ is available on Home Premiere on Amazon Prime, and is showing in selected UK cinemas now.