Welcome back to 1 out of 5 – Would Recommend, where…I still haven’t watched animated Titanic yet. I am, however, jazzed for the release of Mortal Kombat 11, so I broke out my old VHS copy of Mortal Kombat Annihilation to talk about.
What’s The Plot?
In the immediate aftermath of Liu Kang’s tournament victory in the first movie, Outworld Emperor Shao Khan leads his armies to Earth and promptly murders one of its protectors. The survivors – Liu Kang, Sonya Blade, and Kitana – will have to recruit new warriors (Jax…. just Jax, really) to repel this invasion and prevent the merger of the realms!
Who Made This Beautiful Garbage?
Studio marketing execs, as far as can be determined. That’s a bit exaggerated, but not a whole lot of care went into crafting this flick. It is mostly just one fight scene after the next (not necessarily bad, natch) and managed to cram all but eight of the thirty-one distinct characters that appeared in Mortal Kombat Trilogy into the movie – and of that eight, two died in the first movie and two more are mentioned. Many of the fighters who show up do so as little more than cameos and most of them go unnamed.
Five Reasons to See It
- The cast is a who’s who of 90s-00s b-movie and genre TV royalty: Brian Thompson (Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Star Trek, X-Files, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys) as Shao Khan, James Remar (The Warriors, Judge Dredd, The Phantom, Blade: Trinity) as Raiden, Talisa Soto (Vampirella) returning as Kitana, Sandra Hess (Beastmaster III: The Eye of Braxus, SeaQuest DSV, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD) as Sonya Blade, Musetta Vander (Oblivion, Oblivion II: Backlash, Wild Wild West, Babylon 5, Buffy The Vampire Slayer) as Sindel, and more.
- One of the designated girl fights, between Sonya Blade and a totally unnamed Mileena, takes place in a mud pit for maximum fan service. Immediately after, Jax punches a demon in the ass about ten times.
- Look for Ray Park (Star Wars Episode I, X-Men, G. I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra) and Tony Jaa (Furious 7, xXx: The Return of Xander Cage, tons of Asian flicks) doing stuntwork!
- Sonya Blade is genuinely a lot more badass in this flick than in the first: she had exactly one fight in the original movie, while she racks up wins against no less than three Outworld Warriors here.
- No quote, just five words: James Remar with bleached hair.
This movie feels, despite having been a major release by a division of Warner Bros., inescapably like it was meant to be direct to video. The cast, the plot (or lack thereof), the special effects, and the production value all feel like something that was never meant to be seen on the silver screen. That said, it is an enjoyable ride, particularly for fans of the franchise who won’t be confused by the unnamed fighters popping up every five minutes.
Come Back Next Week For…I’m Gonna Stop Making Promises