Mortal Kombat is not about death, it is about the persistence of life. Liu Kang and a few selected fighters from the earth defeated the sorcerer Shang Tsung from the outside world. According to the rules of Mortal Kombat, their victory kept earth safe for another generation. Our chosen ones were brought back to Liu Kang’s home on earth just to enjoy a brief period of peace. for someone from Outworld has a different point of view … than ‘s film blog throws a “cinematic review” of the 1997 follow-up film Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.
MORTAL KOMBAT: ANNIHILATION
“Destroy All Expectations”
Directed by John R. Leonetti
Authors: Brent V. Friedman and Bryce Zabel
Cast: Robin Shou, Talisa Soto, Brian Thompson, Sandra Hess and James Remar
Running time: 95 minutes
Release DATE: November 21st1997
After Lord Raiden (James Remar) and his chosen warriors Liu Kang (Robin Shou), Sonya Blade (Sandra Hess), Johnny Cage (Chris Conrad) and Princess defeated the evil wizard Shang Tsung and won the Mortal Kombat tournament for Earth Kitana (Talisa Soto) are brought home to an unexpected surprise. Shao Kahn (Brian Thompson), the emperor of the outside world, has invaded the earth and spawned legions of soldiers led by his loyal generals Ermac (John Medlen), Sheeva (Marjeen Holden), Rain (Tyrone Wiggins) and Motaro (Deron McBee). Kahn’s plan is to merge the Earthrealm with Outworld into one realm by reviving Kitana’s mother, Queen Sindel (Musetta Vander). Claim to the earth under its own imperial rule. After the death of Johnny Cage, the warriors flee; Escape to a hidden passage where Lord Raiden tells them there are no more rules because Shao Kahn broke them and the only way to defeat him is to bring Sindel’s peace. Six days before the merger is complete, Raiden sends Sonya to find her old partner Jax (Lynn Red Williams) and Liu and Kitana to find an enigmatic man named Nightwolf (Lightfoot) while the Thunder God seeks advice from the elders on how the events that have happened that have passed.
As I mentioned in my 1995 cinematic flashback Mortal KombatI was super excited when the original film came out and my younger self was absolutely thrilled. Looking back from today, the film was definitely flawed, but the enjoyment and sheer pointless entertainment fun of it all remain intact as I still adored the film with a classic cult sense of nostalgia. Like many others, I was definitely looking forward to a sequel to the 1995 film and I remember watching it Mortal Kombat: destruction in theaters when it came out in 1997 (I remember the theater was crammed full). I kind of liked the movie at the time, but it was definitely a step backwards from the 1995 movie. Over time, I felt like the movie was getting worse and worse (for me), with the movie showing its age and more and more flaws in feature came to light. Maybe that was the aspiring film critic in me. So, with the upcoming release in 2021 Mortal Kombat Rebooting, I decided to take a look back Mortal Kombat: Annihilation to see if this follow-up movie is as bad as I remember. Sadly it is.
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation Directed by John R. Leonetti, who would direct such films as Annabelle and The silence as well as a cameraman for movies like The incantation and Insidious: Chapter 2. At the time of this publication, Leonetti was making his directorial debut destruction and it is clear that he is incapable of leading such an ambitious project. As for the positives, well…. there’s not much I have to say that the premise for the film is quite intriguing; Find destruction The main conflict setup story is loosely based on Mortal Kombat 3. To be fair, I think the setup story is a good one. Find the central heroes who spend most of the film on separate journeys and come together to defeat the “great evil” in the end. It definitely works, but only adequately. Additionally, like the movie before, some of the fighting sequences are pretty decent and hold up.
Unfortunately a large part of destruction is embroiled in disappointment and is consistently criticized a lot. Perhaps the biggest mistake the movie makes is the simple fact that the feature isn’t that good … in almost every way. From a director’s point of view, the film is terribly helpful and Leonetti’s inexperience is very clear. Find destruction being littered with pitfalls from a director’s point of view, executing storyboard elements, and making directing decisions. All of this makes the movie pretty ridiculously awful; This sequel is a very bad movie in general. It also calls into question the budget of the film. destruction had almost double the production budget of its predecessor in 1995, but feels quite cheap and is clear in almost every way. The settings, locations, set pieces, costume clothing and the editing of the film all seem lackluster and below average compared to the original film, which came out two years earlier. Worse still are the movie’s visual effects, with a large number of CGI effects being incredibly poor to the point of being terribly worthy of negating the fantastic appeal the filmmakers are trying to convey.
One personal criticism I have of this film is the fact that Annihilation tries to do too much with its story and characters. How? The story feels great and big, but at times feels very shaky and confusing, and it lacks the impact required for a save the world endeavor. In addition, there is so much going on in the film that it gets pretty mixed up and most of the storylines (whether story arc or character development) are neglected. In addition, the film tries too hard to offer enough fan service from the Mortal Kombat universe that a variety of new characters (e.g. Rain, Sindel, Sheeva, Motaro, Smoke, Millenna, Jade, Nightwolf, etc.) are hardly noticeable and are only shown in the film for pure fan moments. Such is the story of destruction is packed with so many characters that many are forgotten and begs the question of why they are introduced in the first place. This is the scene with Sub-Zero and Scorpion who are shown in one scene and never again. Why put them in at all? The same goes for the introduction of Animality, the famous finishing move from the Mortal Kombat games that seems completely out of place destruction and feels lackluster when the movie tries to translate it into the main story (during the climax); creating one of the worst moments in the entire movie. Plus, the script for the film is terrible, boring, and completely memorable. filled with story holes, fragmented storylines, and overflowing with necessary moments. There was a certain kind of amusing cheesiness and campiness from the first movie, however destruction takes the level higher and delivers such exaggerated, cheesy-filled sequences that the film becomes rather incoherent.
What’s worse is the cast of Mortal Kombat: Annihilation is incredibly boring and wooden throughout the feature; bring about many crowning moments that are purely ridiculous. Of the returning actors from the first film, only two repeat their roles…. that is Robin Shou and Talisa Soto as Liu Kang and Kitana respectfully. While her involvement in this project continues to make an appearance for the sake of continuity between the two films, Shou and Soto seem not to be forgotten in destruction;; Play around the ridiculous dialogue given to them and the lackluster character evolutions the script gives them. Even other returning characters like Sonya Blade (Hess), Jax (Williams) and Raiden (Remar) are extremely gritty compared to their 1995 counterparts. Basically, almost all characters are in destruction are thinly sketched caricatures and are played by talents who cannot perform properly and appear horrible and cheesy.
Worst of all in the movie, however, is actor Brian Thompson as the mighty Shao Kahn, the emperor of the outside world. Thompson just doesn’t seem as intimate as he was in the previous film and in the previous one. In truth, he seems pretty hokey for being such an impressive and ruthless leader. Thompson would be okay if he played like a general for Shao Khan, but not like Shao Khan himself. A total miscast in my opinion. Even all the other players in the film (good or bad) are completely unused in their character portrayal and are portrayed by the acting talents behind them through such crowning and boring performances.
The legacy of Mortal Kombat: Annihilation is a grim thing and one that exposes the black mark of the cinematic enterprise. The film received critical reviews from both critics and moviegoers, grossing $ 51 million at the box office against its $ 35 million production budget. As of 2021, the film has a 2% rating for Rotten Tomato and is still hailed as one of the worst sequel films to date. Due to such backlash from criticism and poor reception, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation ended a planned film trilogy with a third live action entry entitled Mortal Kombat: Devastation be canceled. Of course, there were other avenues the franchise went through (a short-lived animation series and a live-action TV show for a season) as well as the video game series that expanded the lore and character of the Mortal Kombat universe. Unfortunately, the film franchise is after that Mortal Kombat: Annihilation stopped. Let’s hope the 2021 reboot movie saves this potential and lucrative franchise for another round on the big screen.
As it is Mortal Kombat: Annihilation is a sadly bad movie. It’s messy disjointed, too messy, poorly structured / executed, and honestly crowded. Yes, it’s a pretty ambitious project, but the film is just more gone than it can chew on. When you combine the flat script, wooden dialogue, boring characters, and ridiculous CGI effects, the end result is clear that this particular sequel company is poorly managed from the start. In the end, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation is just an abysmal venture that may have some sparse redemption qualities, but is so arbitrary and horrific that it just leaves an extremely flawed taste in your mouth and is one of the worst adaptations of video game films ever. Save time and money if you haven’t seen this movie as yet Mortal Kombat: Annihilation is nowhere near as a “flawless victory”.
Cinematic Flashback Score: 0.9 out of 5
Fun Fact: Both actors Christopher Lambert and Linden Ashby, who originally played Lord Raiden and Johnny Cage in 1995 Mortal Kombat Film, were offered to repeat their roles in Mortal Kombat: AnnihilationHowever, turned down their respective offers after reading the film’s script. The two were then replaced by actors James Remar and Chris Conrad.