Now that Mortal Kombat 2021 is out and everyone’s made their think pieces on it, I’d like to chat about a movie that’s near and dear to my heart and childhood: Mortal Kombat ’95.
Honestly, watching it over the years as I grew older and understood more about the lore and characters of Mortal Kombat, I’m still completely in love with this movie as I was when I was a boy; now I can love it even more with a more critical lens.
The original Mortal Kombat movie is still probably one of the best video game to movie adaptations to date, despite it being less gory/violent than the video game it’s based from. It’s an action packed, somewhat silly take on the franchise, but still a great watch overall. The fight choreography is a little rough in some spots, but still better than the abysmal Mortal Kombat: Annihilation and even MK 2021. The music is fast and fierce with industrial and techno tracks from artists like Traci Lords, KMFDM and George Clinton. Techno Syndrome by The Immortals opens up the film with the iconic “MORTAL KOMBAAAAATT” theme, which shaped a generation.
The characters are charismatic and full of personality too. Robin Shou as the main hero, Liu Kang. Bridgette Wilson as the soldier turned fighter, Sonya Blade. Linden Ashby as the movie star/martial artist, Johnny Cage. Talisa Soto as the sultry and mysterious, Princess Kitana. Christopher Lambert as the thunder god and protector of Earthrealm, Raiden. And the great Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa as the sinister and deadly sorcerer, Shang Tsung. A great casting (not quite perfect), especially for the time period.
This movie has everything: great fight scenes, good music, amazing characters, a decent plot. Go watch the original Mortal Kombat right now, it’s amazing. It’s on HBOMax along with the sequel, Annihilation, two other lesser known shows, Mortal Kombat: Conquest, Mortal Kombat Legacy. Not to mention the animated movie, Scorpion’s Revenge is also available of the platform.
Watch Mortal Kombat. All of it. Marathon it, live tweet, insta-stories, Tik-Toks, etc. Do it. Especially the original. It’s got a special place in my soul and I’m just happy I get to share that with you all.