7 ways you didn't realise the 1995 Mortal Kombat movie is the most stunningly accurate video game adaptation ever made

The Goro fight is just as cheap and unfair as Mortal Kombat boss fights usually are

Mortal Kombat boss fights are often utter works of art. Unfortunately, the particular works of art in question tend to be postmodern performance pieces deconstructing the various constituent elements of bad video game design. Interactive mixed-media installation pieces on the perils of lazy game balance and artifical challenge, if you will. All the cheap hits are there. Unblockable attacks, damage nullifying moves, spammed super-attacks, random combo-breaking… Mortal Kombat boss fights use them all with the kind of extreme prejudice that implies that Ed Boon has been feuding with your family since your grandmother’s time.

But look! Here is the Mortal Kombat movie’s first Goro fight! Let's see how it compares, shall we?

Virtually unbreakable blocking. On the couple of occasions he does get hit he takes barely any damage at all. He keeps spamming the same over-powered swinging punch attack until his opponent is naught but a salty pile of mulch and regret. Anyone who’s fought Shao “I’m going to interrupt your combo whenever I damn well like” Kahn in the latest MK game's story mode will know exactly what I’m talking about here.

Goddamn it, Mortal Kombat movie, you're so accurate that if you were screened in 3D it would like being transported into the very game itself. Just like Tron, but smellier and with more kidneys on the floor. 

There’s an Endurance Match just before the last boss fight (with authentically nerfed opponents)

Bit of a Mortal Kombat tradition, the near-end Endurance Match. The gist is simple. Whereas in normal endurance-free fights you battle against one blood-thirstily antisocial git or gitess, in endurance matches you fight against a bunch of them in a row, with only one magical green gauge of personal survivability to work with. At their best, Endurance Matches are taut, tactical tests of skill, focus and stamina, and actually damnably rewarding to win. Though to ensure game balance and avoid making the conflict about as fair as setting two toddlers on each other and only giving one of them a hammer, EMs will often gimp the opponent characters a bit in order to make them less resilient to your high-speed fleshy impacts, or drop the damage of their own flailing tickles of aggression.

Obviously someone on the Mortal Kombat movie production team was paying insanely close attention to detail when planning the film’s climactic scenes, because guess what? Frankly, you shouldn’t have to guess, because I’ve already told you what in the headline of this section. And there's a video of it just above this paragraph. Pay attention.

Not only does Shang Tsung step out to let multiple guys have a go at Liu Kang, sharing in the brotherhood that only a bunch of generic multi-ethnic violence sterotypes can understand, said random punch-mongers all turn out to be weaker than a Mormon warehouse party once Kang gets amongst it. Put it this way, at one point our hero blocks a fully-trained Samurai’s katana blow with his toes.

I repeat:

If you try that against a real fully-trained Samurai, the only thing you block is your ability to get shoes that fit for the rest of your life. Conclusion? Gimped samurai.

Second conclusion: Authentic adaptation flawless victory! 


Mortal Kombat

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  • codystovall - August 27, 2012 5:51 a.m.

    Never watched it, will never watch it.
  • Yokosuka046 - August 27, 2012 8:42 a.m.

    You are really missing out. It was actually a commercial success, and was well received audience wise when it came out. It's awesome, silly fun and it's amazingly accurate (aside form the articles jokes). As an adult gamer it's one of my favorite films. Besides you aren't going to find a better video game movie outside this or Silent Hill.
  • wampastompa - August 27, 2012 11:18 a.m.

    Why? It's one of the most enjoyable video game movies of all time. And I know that's like saying it's the smartest kid with down syndrome, but it's actually really good. Get some buddies together, bring a six pack and watch it on a Saturday night, you won't be disappointed.
  • ChiChiRocket - August 28, 2012 7:49 p.m.

    Thank you for your interesting, insightful and not-at-all-completely-useless input.
  • SDHoneymonster - August 27, 2012 6:14 a.m.

    Oh god the waistlines, the 90s trouser waistlines...
  • Moondoggie1157 - August 27, 2012 6:29 a.m.

    Great Flick, definitely embodied Mortal Kombat. I lived by this movie when I was little, and boy was I excited when the sequel came out... And, well... We all know how that went. Anywho, I think this calls for me to re-watch Mortal Kombat, and that makes me excited MUAHAHA!
  • bass88 - August 27, 2012 6:37 a.m.

    I actually love this film. Alongside Big Trouble In Little China, it's the only American film to capture the Hong Kong aesthetic. Vibrant colours, spooky (not scary) production design, a feee-flow camera and energetic editing. And Christophe Lambert rocks. Just like he did in White Material.
  • sandplasma - August 27, 2012 7:04 a.m.

    I somewhat agree with you, I feel the electric guys in Big Trouble in Little China were better Raidens however. lol
  • Galgomite - August 27, 2012 8:19 a.m.

    The first MK movie IS awesome, in a way I could only truly appreciate after seeing the second, but I don't actually agree with much of anything else in this article.
  • Godzillarex - August 27, 2012 9:19 a.m.

    Great article! Probably the best video game movie of all time.
  • smcgarvey - August 27, 2012 11:08 a.m.

    You haven't lived until you've seen Mortal Kombat as a midnight movie. Haven't lived, I tell you.
  • gilgamesh310 - August 27, 2012 11:11 a.m.

    David's articles seem to becoming more pretentious by the days. I'm sure any of us could contrive some sort of logic as to why even the House of the Dead film is a masterpiece. I do like Mortal Kombat though and think it's at least the joint best movie adaption(with Silent Hill).
  • BladedFalcon - August 27, 2012 11:17 a.m.

    You do realize he was being sarcastic and the entire article was sardonic and a joke in nature, right?
  • GR_JustinTowell - August 28, 2012 5:20 a.m.

    Erm... I think on this occasion he was being serious!
  • Moondoggie1157 - August 27, 2012 6:43 p.m.

    Man, what a downer... You're like a bottle of Valium, women's basketball and Ben Stein all rolled into one. You've actually lowered me into a depression, like an R.E.M. and old photo depression, you know the kind. Thanks for that. **Everyyybodyyy Hurrrrts*** Why do people have to be buzzkills? Especially when they actually agree with the article? Ehhhh... I don't get it.
  • Sjoeki - August 27, 2012 1:30 p.m.

    17 years? Has it been that long since that movie came out? Starting to feel old over here!
  • Rowdie - August 27, 2012 2:13 p.m.

    All the beautiful research out the door with one nut shot to goro.
  • Erebus - August 27, 2012 10:43 p.m.

    THIS!!!!!! I remember all my friends and I that watched this at the cinemas stating as much. " can't groin punch Goro!!!!11!!"

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