We kind of get served shit cookies every once in a while and this week’s movie was no exception to this rule. Video Game movies tend to be easy picking, one need only look at the rich history of crapfests that began with Super Uwe Bolls…um Dead, BloodRayne, Max Payne, Silent Hill, Hitman, and today’s installation Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.
The 1997 follow up to the successful first Mortal Kombat movie (why that one is successful is beyond us, but fuck it, that’s a movie for another Monday. At least that one had Christopher Lambert staring as a Chinese lightning God…yeah you read that right, its only slightly more convincing that him as a Scottish Highlander.) I won’t even bother mentioning any of the “stars” because you won’t recognize them outside of this franchise. I will on the other hand tell you that it will set you back 94 minutes of John R. Leonetti directed whatever.
Shao Kahn decides to break all the rules of Mortal Kombat and invade Earth Realm with his Generals Motaro, Sheeva, Rain and Ermac leading the way. Our intreprid band of warriors must defend Earth Realm from the forces of Outworld the only way they know how, by ripping off their arms and beating them to death with their own appendages.
Fight scenes happen, Jax gets released and they go on a ride inspired by ROBOTS.
More fight scenes happen and they go to OutWorld to take the fight to the enemy. The scripts plot is thoroughly examined, explored, explained and then disregarded in exchange for more fighting and then finally the worst CGI ever seen. Seriously this is a horrible ending that is highly unbelievable. It makes the CSO from 70’s Doctor Who look excellent.
In the end the movie and the lack of meaningful interaction with the audience give this movie a flawless fatality on this franchise, killing it like a noob in the arcade.
What to like
What not to like
- All of the faithful adaptation of the first movie and the charm that it had, albeit anorexic at best is gone. As for that matter is any acting credibility of having a Frenchmen portraying a Chinese Thunder god. You know it’s bad when you miss the acting chops of Christopher Lambert.
- We can not state this clearly, or frequently enough; the special effects suck. Barraka is a rubber mask, Sub Zero’s ice effects were generated on a C64, and Motaro’s legs were early renderings from Hercules: the Amazing Journey. We won’t even discuss the travesty at the end with the poorly rendered dragons performing karate, we doubt you will make it that long.
- Mortal Kombat has a rich story line and backstories for characters, at least if you pay attention to the video games. This movie ignores all of it and just goes for the flash bang of fucking horrible fight scenes. At least in the first movie the actual fight sequences were well choreographed and filmed. This movie’s fights break down to one or two jump attacks, one or two body blows, and then an explosion.
- Someone turned the color saturation up to 11 during the filming of this movie. It seriously hurts our eyes to watch and made us wonder if we were actually suffering from a Pseudoisoschromatic deficiency.
- When you have an ensemble cast of characters that displays great chemistry, at least they did on screen in the first movie, and none of them are willing to return except Liu Kang and Kitana (Robin Shou & Talisa Soto) you should not make the second movie.
- They could not even use Brian Thompson as the villain. The man who is best known for playing the bad guy could not play the bad guy.
- We could forgive this movie for the plethora of problems if it did anything worthy, but no. Seriously this movie is the cinematic equivalence of have teeth drilled without anesthetic for 92 minutes.
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation proves the rule that all movies with a semi-colon suck ass. It gets a very solid sympathy 1 out of 5, we gave it a point for Sandra Hess in a mud fight.