Arts & Entertainment

Mortal Kombat Almost Achieves Flawless Victory

The team behind Mortal Kombat may not have achieved a flawless victory but they certainly packed a punch.

Video game movie adaptations don’t have the greatest track record but over recent years we appear to be heading in a much more positive direction with the genre. Following in the wake of the success seen by  Detective Pikachu and Sonic The Hedgehog comes a film adaptation of the ultra violent fighting game franchise Mortal Kombat.

Directed by Simon McQoiud this film is faithful representation of the much loved fighting game franchise. In this iteration of the property we’re introduced to Cole Young (Lewis Tan), Earth’s latest champion to be chosen to take part in Mortal Kombat – a life or death tournament for supremacy over good and evil.

Cole unfortunately is the dullest and least developed character in the film, which is not helped by Tan’s stiff and uninspiring performance. Conversely Josh Lawson as Kano steals the show with his often improvised and hilarious one-liners. Heading into this one I had no expectations for Kano, as one of my least favourite members of the game’s roster but Lawson’s performance has certainly elevated the character in my eyes.

The film certainly earns hits R18+ rating with extreme violence, gore and obscenities. A factor which was crucial in this film capturing the essence of what made the game so loved to begin with. 

Throughout the film their are plenty of Easter eggs for long time Mortal Kombat fans, whether those be character reveals, character backstories, fighting moves or specific lines of dialogue such as “flawless victory”, “Kano Wins” or “Get Over Here!”. Sadly there was one specific line of dialogue that was missing, “Finish Him”, which had it been inserted into the final battle would have earned the film an extra star on its own.

Obviously a film based on a fighting game was going to find it difficult to bring much depth or nuance to it’s story. However, Mortal Kombat is a fun, gruesome, action-packed popcorn flick which viewers will undoubtably have a good time viewing.

★★★ ½

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