Audiences have waited over two decades for another shot at a movie based on the Mortal Kombat video game series. The original came out back in 1995 and was a box office success, while still being a cheesy and fun flick for fans to look back on. On the other side, the 1997 sequel holds a paltry 2% on Rotten Tomatoes.
The franchise has delivered some really good games in recent years and it feels like the right time for a new attempt at a film. There are obvious reasons for moviegoers to be concerned, while there are also a lot of reasons for excitement. Mortal Kombat is set to hit theaters and HBO Max on April 16, 2021.
Considering Mortal Kombat is a fighting game with plenty of playable characters, it’s only fitting that the film features many of them. While it’s great that players will get to see their favorite characters come to life on the big screen, it’s also a reason to be a bit worried.
It can be a tricky balancing act to include so many characters on screen in a movie. Some might not get the screen time they deserve and won’t be fleshed out as much. Some films nail the concept but most of them struggle when there’s possibly too much going on and it works better in a series format.
From everything that people have seen, this movie looks like it will be a mostly faithful adaptation. Producer James Wan and everyone else behind this version come across as fans of the series who want to do it justice. Often, that’s all a gaming audience wants in a movie version.
Someone who cares about the brand goes a long way. Images and clips so far show that this film is at least somewhat nailing the vibe. The character designs are on point, the violence is there, and the fight scenes look like cinematic takes on the video game.
This isn’t a slight against CGI in general. There was next to no way to pull off this movie without it. Aspects like Mileena’s mouth, Raiden’s lightning, and Goro’s entire body wouldn’t really be possible with some form of CGI. Alas, it’s still a question mark.
While the CGI has looked mostly strong in the images and clips seen so far, there’s a possibility that so much of it might not hold up in the actual movie. That is especially true when it comes to those who watch it on the big screen in a cinema.