The new Mortal Kombat (2021) movie hits Amazon Prime Video on September 11 (also in Hindi, Telugu, Tamil) – and long-time fans of the ultra-bloody, ultra-gory video game franchise are in for a rollicking fun ride. In case you’ve been living under a rock, or didn’t catch the movie’s theatrical release, here are 8 reasons why you need to watch Mortal Kombat on streaming.
1. It’s Faithful To The Mortal Kombat Lore
The core premise of the Mortal Kombat series (cross-franchise) is that Earthrealm and Outworld have been locked in a eons-long battle. To fend off the invasion from Outworld, Earth must rally its chosen champions to fight one-on-one with those of the Outworld, every 100 odd years. On the fringes of this core tournament are various other plots and subplots – with each character carrying decades worth of backstory and lore. So, from ancient rivalries, to trips across Outworld, Netherrealm and Earthrealm, Mortal Kombat 2021 keeps faithful to the video game mythology, while adding some new elements in the mix. Even if you’re unfamiliar with the MK canon – the movie lets you dive right in and get up to speed.
2. Your Favourite Characters Are Returning
The new Mortal Kombat picks up in modern day, where another Mortal Kombat tournament is around the corner. Lightning God Raiden is marshalling Earth’s chosen fighters, while Shang Tsung has his team ready to win Earth for the Outworld once and for all. That’s why, whether you’re a fan of the long running video game franchise, or of the two highly enjoyable, but critically panned movies from the 90s – your favourite good guys, bad guys (and some in between) like Kano, Sonya, Lui Kang, Raiden, Goro, Jaxx return for the 2021 reboot.
3. Sub-Zero vs Scorpion
Speaking of ancient rivalries, the century and life/death spanning fight between the game’s two most popular fighters forms an important part of the movie’s plot. Sub Zero is the Bi-Han, leader of the Lin Kuei clan of warriors, who brutally eliminates Shirai Ryu clan, to which Scorpion (Hanzo Hasashi) belongs. This rivalry precipitates the events of the Mortal Kombat movie as we move from ancient Japan, to the modern day. Also, if you’re in the mood to explore this story arc more, check out the animated Mortal Kombat: Scorpion’s Revenge, also on Amazon Prime Video.
Okay, this is only a spoiler alert, if you know nothing about the franchise. In which case, this is not really a spoiler either. But our favourite celebrity fighter with 1000-dollar sunglasses is missing in the new Mortal Kombat movie. Johnny Cage, as the wisecracking, cocky fighter, who is out of place in the tournament isn’t back for this reboot. What we do get instead is Josh Lawson’s Kano, who takes over as the comedic relief. Kano delivers some of the funniest (and corniest) lines in the movie with aplomb. He does make Johnny Cage’s absence bearable.
Let’s just admit to our peace-loving, flower-waving selves that the ‘Fatalities’ are half the price of admission for a Mortal Kombat movie/game. What is a ‘Fatality’ you ask? Well, it is a critical part of what makes Mortal Kombat games so much fun (and violent). With a fatality, you finish off your opponent in game in the goriest, blood-soaked and inventive of ways. We saw timid versions of these in the 90s version of the movies, but Mortal Kombat (2021) isn’t holding back. There’s plenty of those violent, hyped-up finishing moves in here to satisfy everyone’s bloodlust.
6. Worthy Meta Moments Aplenty
Mortal Kombat is self-aware and knows that it is, in essence, a video game movie. Therefore some of the “Deadpool-esque” jokes and callbacks to the MK lore totally work. Down low kick spam anyone? Didn’t get that reference? Ask your friend who plays video games and he/she will tell you.
7. Of course, The Fights
This is a no brainer, but yes, there’s some awesome close contact Kombat to be witnessed here. The movie takes some of the highlights from the games, including special moves, fatalities and more, to deliver top-notch action. Keep a watch out for Nitara vs Kung Lao, Liu Kang vs Kabal and the final Mexican stand-off.
8. And The Soundtrack
The original techno soundtrack is back (mildly remixed) – and we’re all for hearing that gong and screaming, ‘MORTAAAL KOMMBAAAAAAAT!’
Recommendation in collaboration with Amazon Prime Video