It has been said that more often than not, movies based on videogames just plain suck. One needs only look at 1993’s “Super Mario Bros.” and the “BloodRayne” series by German director Uwe Boll to get that idea. Then again, there are videogame films that hit the spot. One of the earliest gems is 1995’s “Mortal Kombat” from New Line Cinema, which was so good that some of the plot and character elements used there were carried back to the source games. The “Mortal Kombat” game franchise itself got a reboot during the 2010s, so it seemed right for the movies to get a remake. Its first trailer definitely impresses.
If you are wonder what that /s means, it is because Warner Bros. Pictures, which is working on the “Mortal Kombat” movie of the new generation, actually released two trailers in accordance with age restrictions. The Hollywood Reporter has it that blue band and red band versions of the first preview on “Mortal Kombat” were released Thursday, February 18, with the red band not being shy of demonstrating just how “faithful” it is to the original material. The first game after all was controversial for all the blood and gore, especially depicted in finishing moves.
For fans of the fighting game franchise since the early decades, they must be surprised at the new viewpoint character portrayed by Lewis Tan. Cole Young is an MMA fighter, who has always wondered about his odd birthmark, a dragon symbol in a circle. When he is attacked by a masked assassin that can freeze objects, Cole falls in with a random group of martial artists gathered together by one who claims to be the oriental Gold of Thunder, where they must prepare for a coming formalized battle between realms, the tournament called Mortal Kombat.
Now, the fighters assembled by Lord Raiden (Tadanobu Asano) that Cole runs into are more familiar to the gamers. There is the franchise main character Liu Kang (Ludi Lin), his fellow monk Kung Lao (Max Huang), American soldiers Sonya Blade (Jessica McNamee) and Jax Briggs (Mehcad Brooks), and Aussie criminal with cybernetic eye Kano (Josh Lawson). The ice assassin pursuing Cole is called Sub-Zero (Joe Taslim), who is under contract to the mysterious Shang Tsung (Chin Han) and has a personal battle against the ninja Hanzo Hasashi, also called Scorpion (Hiroyuki Sanada). A warrior woman armed with sai, Mileena (Sisi Stringer) is also involved somehow.
Directed by Simon McQuoid, the new “Mortal Kombat” film is yet another Warner Bros. release for this year that will go both ways, getting a cinematic premiere on April 16 at the same time as going to HBO Max streaming.
Image courtesy of Bloody Disgusting