Since it was the 20th anniversary of Mortal Kombat this week, I decided to watch Mortal Kombat. That’s a bit of a lie, I wanted to watch after watching the trailer on Kotaku’s list of “Best Video Game Movies”, but I found out it came out on August 18th, 1995. As I’m writing this now, that was only two days ago. Here are the things that went through my mind as I watched. There are spoilers. So you may want to watch it if you haven’t already, or you can read this and decide if it’s worth your time. Spoiler: it is.

  • Why is Raiden Highlander?
  • Why are the Americans unfazed by the balls of light that attacked Sub-Zero and Scorpion?
    • Why did they not freak out about having Sub-Zero freeze Sonya’s gun or the scorpion that came out of Scorpion’s hand?
  • Why is Raiden dressed like Gandalf the White?
  • Johnny Cage is asking the right questions at 18:26
  • God, Sonya’s the typical “I can rationalize everything” chick you see in action movies.
  • Christopher Lambert’s Raiden and Christian Bale’s Batman should start a podcast.
  • I liked Sonya better when she Ms. Vaughn in “Billy Madison”
  • Why can’t the Mortal Kombat theme be playing all the time, like “Scarborough Fair” in The Graduate?
  • Johnny Cage: Typical, loveable 90’s asshole
  • A whole bunch of food was brought in and then Shang Tsung’s goons flip them?
  • A meme in the making 
  • I am only 30 minutes in and I love this movie. I can’t be an actor, because I love such a derided movie. Also, I sure as hell don’t have a Sonya Blade body.
  • The work with Goro was pretty nice. He reminds me of the Gorgonites from Small Soldiers.
    • Now I want to watch Small Soldiers, play the PS1 game, and I want the Chip Hazard action figure I had when I was a kid…I wasn’t raised right, was I?
  • YAY! Mortal Kombat song!
  • So Liu and Johnny get to take on three goons at a time, and Sonya only gets one? SEXISM
  • God bless Robin Shou’s 90’s hair
  • Christopher Lambert was born in New York and raised in Switzerland and his accent is the a perfect product of such an upbringing. Also, I am one of the many who thinks he looks like Thomas Jane. I often get the two of them mixed up.
    • Take your ass to town and leaving it there, mate.
  • I understand that Johnny’s clothes may still be wet, but couldn’t he at least changed his shirt. I can’t complain too much, the color looks good on him, but it’s not practical.  [x]
  • Fatality
  • Yeah, that’s it in and out.
    • Johnny is not exactly Mickey from Rocky
  • I never even saw Sonya talk to Art, why is she so broken up about him getting killed, when she has seen other human strangers die all day?
  • Yes, because Johnny and Art had a fifty-second conversation on the dock and sat next to each other at the feast, they are BFFs and Johnny is deeply saddened by his death.
  • I get pissed off every time Christopher Lambert comes on stage. That is not Raiden. That is Christopher Lambert looking like an idiot.
  • Goro is always raising his arms. When I turn 21, I am turning this into a drinking game. 
    • A shot for every shot of him raising his arms. So it can be the same scene, but you can only take another drink whenever the camera angle changes.
    • I like the incorporation of violins whenever they show Raiden in this scene. I don’t know
  • I can’t really make fun of the Art/Johnny thing, since it helped to progress the story and develop Johnny’s character dramatically, in spite of Art’s lack of screentime. RIP Art.
  • Also, don’t shit on Johnya. If it weren’t for Johnya, there wouldn’t be Cassie Cage.
  • These were all the things I thought while Goro had his arms raised.
  • Linden Ashby sounds like a brand of sunglasses. Sorry, Linden.
  • He did the nut cracker! His big plan was the nut cracker! A dick move, but a good one. That split.
    • In and out
    • Funniest scene in any video game movie
    • Take your shirt off, Johnny. Not just because I want you to take your shirt off. It’s more sensible
  • Total Recall called, they want their mountain back.
  • This is a pretty dumb movie, but it’s like that stupid guy you can’t help but love, because he’s funny and knows how to kick ass.
    • Johnny Cage
  • That line is immortal
    • I like how Goro says, “Mmm. Whah?”
  • You’ve been Caged.
  • Damn, Sonya can scream.
  • Why didn’t Liu stand up to Shang Tsung whenever he first took Sonya. They were standing right beside each other during Johnny’s fight with Goro.
  • Lambert’s Raiden doesn’t seem like a god to me. He’s more like the kooky grandpa.
  • Linden Ashby is beautiful, and it’s like there’s always a light shining on him, because he’s always squinting like the sun is in his eyes.
    • I’m sorry Linden, I still love you, and you’re not that squinty.
  • It doesn’t really seem like Raiden taught them anything. He’s kind of like Wilson on House, he says things, and then somebody has an epiphany.
  • I don’t feel like they consistently implement elements of the game enough. They only said fatality once, and the voiceover saying the players name was only used for Reptile, though that may have been necessary for people who watch the film with no prior knowledge of the game.
  • This movie has a kickass soundtrack. My god, it’s like Space Jam for fighting movie music.
  • There’s logic to Reptile: reptile was originally a reptile statue, so when it fell into the vampire demon statue, the spell that brought the reptile statue to life transferred to the vampire demon statue and they merged into one. When he was created by game designers, he was a combination of Scorpion and Sub-Zero, that’s why he is green, and looks like a a palette swap of the two.
  • BICYCLE KICK! A little bit more respectable than the game version, where Liu Kang becomes Curly from the Three Stooges.
  • Why must Kitana be dressed like a dominatrix?
  • Why did they have to put Sonya in a bity dress and give her sexhead?
    • I understand these type of films are made for a male audience, but…Why?
  • I figured that three of the monks were them, because the camera was trained on them from behind, and Kitana had her head hanging conspicuously low, even though she’s the shortest person.
  • Oh, Sonya smiled at him. Johnya! Cassie Cage!
  • Thank you, Johnny Cage, for at least recognizing Sonya’s sexualization.
  • Thank you, Sonya, for scowling.
  • Liu, you’re a smart man. You know that is not your bro without a doubt. You were looking and Shang Tsung from behind a second ago. You saw him morph and get shorter. I SAW YOU LOOKING DIRECTLY AT HIM! FINISH HIM!
  • Okay, so the things Liu says to Shang/Chan is straight from Raiden’s mouth.
  • Flawless victory
    • Yes, a game element.
  • Oh no, Chan. I feel lik crying.
  • This song sounds like the song from the end of Mean Girls
  • The movie’s a wee bit ruined now. I’m laughing because I can only think of Mean Girls.
  • Thank God it didn’t end with Liu saying “Let’s go home.” The Mean Girls comparison would have been too much. The succeeding scene was beautiful.
  • Are they still in the Outlands? Where did all of those children come from?
  • Kind of wish it was Bowser. It looks like they just melted a bunch of cheese on a guys head and let it run down his face.
  • The “I don’t think so,” saved the show! Yeah!

This was fun. I think this is going to be one of those movies I watch whenever I need a laugh. As you see from the links I supplied, some of the best scenes are available on YouTube, but I watched it in full. I don’t think I would have liked it as much if I spent money on it, but I will definitely buy it if I ever find it in a thrift store. I knew quite a bit about the lore before going into this, and I think that it’s important. The movie went about trying to make it understandable to people who weren’t familiar with the movie, but I loved being able to see things from the games put to use.

There is the stigma that video game movies usually suck, but Kotaku was correct to have this on the list of good video games. It’s fun and it comes from the use of game elements in the movie. Not to mention the soundtrack. I still can’t believe it had the song from the end of Mean Girls. I might watch Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, but I’ve seen the infamous scene “But you will die,” and I think I’d rather rewatch Small Soldiers for the first time in at least a decade, and see how it holds up.


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