Mortal Kombat (2021) Review

Mortal Kombat is known for its’s breathtaking battles, unbelievable moves and brutal fatalities. Previous movie adaptations of the game have failed fans and fallen short of the glory of the Midway Games owned franchise. However, Mortal Kombat (2021) corrects the mistakes of its predecessors and makes for an incredibly fun watch.

Simon McQuoid, in his directional debut, revives the original 7 characters of the game, except Johnny Cage. Mortal Kombat is Rated R which means you can expect a lot of slaughterous violence in the movie. Just what we expected, rather, wanted from an equally violent game.

The action choreography of the movie was top-notch and fans will be delighted to know that some gruesome fatalities from the game made it onscreen as well. The characters of the movie are portrayed similar to the games which come included with some popular moves as well (Scorpion’s Get Over Here!)

mortal kombat review
Image: Warner Bros

However, since the main focus of the film is on the action, we are left with underdeveloped characters. The movie also doesn’t tap into the rich lore of the game. But considering we got more action and less talk, it holds up pretty well in our books. 

We are introduced to several characters namely Kano, Liu Kang, Raiden, Scorpion. Sonya Blade, Sub-Zero, Jax and our main protagonist Cole Young. Developing a proper backstory for these characters in a 110-minute runtime is too much to ask, so we understand the action-oriented approach instead. The only characters which receive at least some backstory are Scorpion, Sub-Zero and Cole Young, which is just enough to understand the motive of the characters. 

Kano played by Josh Lawson was a delight to watch onscreen and made for some enjoyable moments with his crass one-liners. Hiroyuki Sanada who plays Hanzo Hasashi/Scorpion in the movie was the highlight of the film despite his limited time on screen.

Image: Warner Bros

The movie is full of easter eggs and references to the Mortal Kombat game. While the majority of them can be understood by players of Mortal Kombat 11, a few of them are reserved for those who’ve played the game back in the arcade days.

Hearing the techno version of the original theme song of Mortal Kombat definitely gave us an adrenaline rush. From heart-ripping fatalities to gut dropping moves, the movie incorporates all the elements of the games to bring out the best adaption of the Mortal Kombat franchise on the big screen.

Final Verdict: 3.8 stars (out of 5)