Mortal Kombat 2021 doesn’t break from this norm but rather changes the flavour in which it delivers the story.
Instead of the fighters from Earth simply being the best of the best, any “chosen” warrior would have a dragon scar on their body, granting them superpowers, and the privilege to fight in the cross-universe tournament, Mortal Kombat.
However, the evildoers from Outworld (another “realm” of existence) decide against fighting fairly and look to murder the fighters before the tournament begins.
These evildoers, led by malevolent wizard Shang Tsung (Chin Han), begin chasing down Cole Young (Lewis Tan), an MMA fighter with a mysterious past and a hidden dark side.
Another huge draw for the Mortal Kombat video games was its excessive and downright comical gore.
I am pleased to say the Mortal Kombat film capitalises on this trope, and frequently shows off people being obliterated in physically impossible ways, with bountiful buckets of blood along the way.
Furthermore, mainstays from the video game series, Scorpion (Hiroyuki Sanada) and Sub-Zero (Joe Taslim), are exceptional.
The special effects surrounded in both Scorpion’s fire abilities, and Sub-Zero’s ice powers looked top-notch and were a thrill to witness.
Unfortunately, not enough time is spent with them. Instead, the focus is placed on the aforementioned Cole Young.
Cole is a wholly original character who hasn’t appeared in any of the video games thus far.
However, the character is completely moronic. Not only does he put his family in danger multiple times, he shrugs off the literal fate of the planet when things get tough for him. If the world ends, your family will die too, Cole! Just think about it!
What’s more, the powers he is granted towards the end of the film are laughable at best. Most of the time I was waiting for him to leave the screen so I could watch more of Sonya Blade (Jessica McNamee) and Kano (Josh Lawson).
Mortal Kombat is a lot of fun. The fight scenes, bombastic characters, fantastic special effects and video game homages are spectacular, however, it falls drastically short with its characterisation. The stars of the movie – Scorpion and Sub-Zero – are used sparingly, while some of the franchise’s bigger characters – including Liu Kang and Kung Lao – feel sidelined. The protagonist, Cole, is frustrating to watch, and idiotic. Although the plot takes some risks by avoiding a Mortal Kombat tournament, not all of it land. Fans of the video games will be able to enjoy this film and see its strengths, but newcomers to the franchise may want to turn off before the film is over.
Mortal Kombat is available to watch now on Amazon Prime Video.
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed