This 2021 reboot follows a down-on-his-luck MMA fighter who must stop an evil sorcerer from taking over the world.
Want to find out where to watch Mortal Kombat? This 2021 reboot follows down-on-his-luck MMA fighter Cole Young, who must team up with Raidan, Sonya Blade, and Jaxx to stop the evil sorcerer, Shang Tsung, and his followers from taking over the world. Mortal Kombat was the first movie in the series after 1997’s disastrous Annihilation, and it reinvigorated the franchise with fan-favorite characters and incredible special effects.
It was also Australian director, Simon McQuoid’s debut movie after a string of commercials, and he impressed fans by keeping the story more grounded and less campy than the originals. Its small scale makes it more personal as an origin story, introducing all the characters and laying the work for bigger things to come in the next installment.
Mortal Kombat received mixed reviews upon release, with some applauding their favorite characters kicking butt onscreen and others disliking the overly-complicated plot and lack of an actual tournament. Even its biggest critics recognize it as a step in the right direction after its disastrous predecessor and look forward to it living up to its potential in the sequel. You can check it out now for yourself on HBO Max.
What’s it about?
The story starts in 17th century Japan, where a ninja called Bi-Han and his Lin Kuei assassins massacre the Shirai Ryu, led by Hanzo Hasashi. Hanzo’s child survives and is taken to safety by the god Raiden.
It then skips to the current day when Shang Tsung sends his assassins to Earthrealm from Outworld to kill any potential winners of the next Mortal Kombat tournament, including MMA fighter Cole Young.
Cole is saved by Sonya Blade and Jaxx and then teams up with Raiden, Liu Kang, and Kung Lao to train to fight Shang Tsung’s forces. He must learn how to access his special abilities called Arcana and unlock the secrets of his ancestry to survive.
What’s the tone like?
For a videogame adaptation, Mortal Kombat often plays it too straight instead of embracing the silliness of the premise. Most of the acting is also quite serious, except for Kano (Josh Lawson), who’s having the time of his life with humor and zinging one-liners.
Where to watch Mortal Kombat
For 110 minutes, those who grew up loving the franchise along with new viewers, young and old, can enjoy some serious action along with some great humor, making this a fun film for general viewers and not just longtime enthusiasts. It’s worth not only one watch but also another and another after that. Mortal Kombat was released by Warner Brothers in April 2021 in theaters and on its HBO Max streaming service, where you can watch it now.