Where to begin on this train wreck of a movie? First off, I warned everyone to destroy any expectations for this film as it might cause alcohol dependency. I wouldn’t even call it a guilty pleasure like Gone in Sixty Seconds, a two-hour exotic car show with only one car chase that features an old Mustang. The Postman was also made with good intentions and was universally panned at the box office, and while the criticism is valid I just seem to enjoy it warts and all. Some films hit home without any logical reason, which I think, is the true essence of a guilty pleasure but Mortal Kombat: Annihilation boldly crosses that fine line that separates a guilty pleasure from something that is truly offensive.
The film uses MK3’s plot but it totally fails in execution with bad casting and worse acting. Brian Thompson was poorly miscast as Shao Khan because he’s very hard to take seriously in that role. In retrospect his biggest role might be for being the Terminator’s first victim. Jean Claude Van Damme fans such as myself might recognize him from Lionheart but that’s about it. James Remar isn’t a bad actor but he’s horrible as Raiden. I preferred Bridgett Wilson to Sandra Hess. I liked JJ Perry as Sub-Zero from Mortal Kombat Conquest but he wasn’t that good of a Scorpion but then again nobody could top Chris Casamassa as Scorpion. Chris was actually busy with Batman & Robin. It’s like being stuck between a rock and a hard place. Chris is mostly a stunt guy and if a movie goes down the crapper like Annihilation did (as Batman & Robin did as well) the actors who get the face time get the blame.
You know this was going to be painful viewing experience because in the first scene the best character from the first movie dies. I don’t want to hear about how Cage dies in MK3. I’m betting the fans heart sank when they saw Johnny Cage die in theaters. Another problem with this movie is it ties to fit too many characters into it. The movie also has to get rid of them also so it’s funny to see Shao Khan kill his minions when doing that is illogical. I guess if this movie has one bright spot it would be the “Kabal and Stryker” scene. In the final scene of Terminator 2: Judgment Day where Arnold/T-800 is lowered into the lava and still manages to give a thumbs up it gets me every time. When Rain is hammered into a fiery pit it never fails to put a smile on my face. Maybe it was the director’s way of commentating on overbearing bosses that mistreat loyal employees. I’m just reaching now.
Fight scenes aren’t bad and the soundtrack is decent but this film could have been so much more. After this trash it took about fourteen years before Mortal Kombat would be considered to hit the big screen.
There is some ridiculous stuff in the movie. Raiden and Shao Khan are brothers and Shinnok is their father. Noob Saibot comes out of Ermac. Dat Baraka costume. Speaking of Baraka, his death is shot from footage used in Rain’s death earlier at the hand of Shao Khan. I guess they were really tight with the budget. Raiden gets a haircut and becomes mortal. The final fight scene featured animalities but the special effects are by far the worst I’ve seen and probably will ever see. No joke. I own the original DVD release and don’t see a reason to upgrade as tempting as it is to see Rain’s hilarious death is glorious HD.
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation is not a guilty pleasure, it’s not one of those “Its so bad that it’s good” kind of movies. It just plain sucks and causes depression and anger. You don’t need me to tell you any of this, in fact the movie reviews itself. Right on the box art of the DVD/Blu-ray it says “DESTROY ALL EXPECTATIONS”…and destroy them you must if you want to escape with your soul after viewing this abomination.
0.5 out of 5