Happy Mortal Kombat Eve everyone! A new holiday that will only happen this once, unless Mortal Kombat is as successful as the studio wants and, in that case,, we might be able to do this three other times. Could you imagine that? A world with a four-part Mortal Kombat movie series? Wonders never cease, do they? Could you imagine how many fatalities our poor fragile eyes could experience in four movies? We’re talking enough to at least entertain a form of traumatic therapy. Of course, we could be immune to such things with a lifetime of video games and horror movies building the foundations of our childhoods. But that’s not an indictment on therapy just an observation on our suppression of extreme amounts of violence and men who can shoot ice/snow out of their hands. I digress.
Ahead of tomorrow’s film, I thought we could have some fun as I lay out ten things I would like to see in the upcoming movie. Just ten. Nothing too daunting. But as someone who is old enough to remember the parent backlash to Sub-Zero ripping someone’s head off with their spine still attached, I would like to believe that I have some emotional attachment to the Mortal Kombat series. I was there from the ground up bicycle kicking people into the corner of the screen hoping not to screw up the control pad combo, so I could blow up entire person while Shao Kahn watched. Mortal Kombat was instrumental to my middle school years and then again in college when you could drink and… other things and play. Nothing like a room full of people jumping out of their chairs because Kano literally ripped out someone’s heart.
So, let’s get this list started with the obvious…
Don’t Make Sub-Zero Go Out Like A Chump- This should be a no-brainer. It’s almost impossible to separate Mortal Kombat and Sub-Zero. The two will forever be linked together. Almost like peanut butter and jelly or Jax and metal arms. One of the things the movie needs to do is give Sub-Zero the respect he deserves. Put some respect on that name! And based on the trailer it looks like that may be the cause because I watched my man freeze someone’s blood and then stab them with it! That should be enough to celebrate the awesome of Sub-Zero, yet, I want more.
Listen, I know the math. This is a fighting tournament and not everyone is going to live. I’ve played Mortal Kombat games in the past. But if we could do that thing where it looks like Sub-Zero dies, after a run that would make the 1999 Knicks proud, only to reveal in the post-credits or closing scene that he’s secretly alive, then I’ll be a happy man at the conclusion of the film.
Scorpion Skull Face- Sub Zero isn’t the only Mortal Kombat fighter to be into COVID prevention, no, there’s a yellow mask-toting character who can teleport and throw a retractable chain spear from his hand. For me, I always had a better handle on Scorpion than I did on Sub-Zero when I played but I knew the score. Scorpion would never be as cool, (ha!), as Sub-Zero and I made my peace with that a long time ago. With that being said, if we don’t get to see Scorpion take off his mask to reveal the fire-breathing skull underneath, then what are we doing here?! What. Are. We. Doing. Which of course leads me to the next thing I’d like to see…
“Toasty”- If Scorpion sets someone on fire with his fire-breathing skull and there’s no reference to the “toasty” game pop-up that always followed, then was the Mortal Kombat movie even worth it?!
“Flawless Victory”- Let’s throw this in there while we’re at it. If no one says “flawless victory” during the film, I think we have the right to demand at least three months of HBO Max for free. And since their subscriptions aren’t exactly killing it right now than they better deliver.
Surprise Characters- We already know that Kano, Sub-Zero, Jax, Sonya, and Goro are going to be in this new Mortal Kombat installment but what about the characters that aren’t confirmed? Obviously, with such a rich tapestry of colorful characters, Mortal Kombat has quite the list of names to pull from for future films. But wouldn’t it be something if the trailers have been hiding characters from us in plain sight? How can you do a Mortal Kombat movie without Liu Kang, who I secretly think is in the movie. How about Johnny Cage? Maybe as an end of movie stinger, we can catch a glimpse of the actor turned fighter tournament murderer, taking off those avatars and getting ready for the next installment. I’d be cool with seeing Baraka and his knife hands too. Or maybe even Noob Saibot… I said what I said. There are tons of characters who need to lose in this tournament so why not throw some in to die in…
A Tournament Fight Montage- Is it even a fight movie if there isn’t a montage?! All the greats have them. Bloodsport and all the Rocky movies. Hell, Rocky IV is a montage within a montage. The original Mortal Kombat made good use of this technique and I hope to see some sort of montage here. We’re not going to be able to see every fight but if we can get glimpses of some of them it’ll be a great way for the film not to (a) drag on and (b) give us maximum fatalities (c) work in some of those surprise characters. Plus, they can use a fun EDM needle drop for it to really get the blood pumping. Think John Wick killing in the club type sounds. Speaking of EDM…
Please Work In the Original Mortal Kombat Techno Song- I know that I’m using the word please but I’m not so much asking here as I am demanding. Don’t put it front and center, there’s no reason for that, but work it in the background. Remember in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies when Peter Parker walks past the person playing the classic Spider-Man theme on a violin? Do something like that. Have it be someone’s ringtone or the backdrop of a commercial on TV or have a character skip it on the radio. I don’t care how you do it just find a way. It will not take very long for my wife to get annoyed with me shouting “MORTAL KOMBAT” and beatboxing every time a fight breaks out.
Goro Destroy- This one speaks for itself. I just want to see Goro run through cats like me through tacos on any given Tuesday. Give me alllllll the Goro mayhem. Dude has four arms! Four! Have him ripping people in half while making a sandwich with his free hands. Have him use all four arms to turn someone into a pancake. And while a part of me will miss the original Goro puppet/CGI thingy from the original films, I’m looking forward to this new interpretation with better graphics, for lack of a better term, so he looks less like Yaddle and more like a four-arm monster who will rip your arms off and eat your face.
Over the Top Bananas Fights- Fight, fight, fight, fight! This is a Mortal Kombat movie so the fights being the central part of the narrative should go without saying. I expect the fighting to be crisp and awesome and, with fatalities thrown into the mix, bonkers. My only hope is that Sub-Zero stabbing someone with their own blood isn’t the coolest (ha!) moment of this movie. I really do hope that there are some tricks up the sleeves here, so we can all go running to Twitter once we’ve watched freaking out about the best fight/kill.
Don’t Take Itself Too Seriously- Part of what made Godzilla vs Kong so successful is that it knew the type of movie it was and played into its strengths. At its core, that was a movie where a giant thunder lizard punked out a massive monkey. And to that degree, Godzilla vs Kong delivered in spades. Not trying to hide that fact allowed the film to really get nuts with it, and as a viewer, I greatly appreciated that.
Let’s not pretend we don’t know the type of movie Mortal Kombat is. Now, it doesn’t have to be as campy as the originals although I would argue that that campiness is part of the charm. I understand wanting to make this a little more serious and foreboding. I’m cool with that. But please don’t lose sight of the fact that this is a movie where someone uses ice to kill people or there’s a character with four freakin’ arms.
I’m optimistic that this won’t be the case, as the trailer presented us characters who all happen to have the same dragon in a circle birthmark like that was normal and will strike a balance between serious and tongue and cheek. I just don’t want to see Mortal Kombat be something it’s not. I’m hoping for a movie that feels like Kickboxer and Bloodsport had a baby. That’s my ideal version of this film.
How about you Geeklings, what are you hoping to see the most in the upcoming Mortal Kombat movie? What surprise characters do you think show up? What fatality do you want to see the most? Sound off in the comments or throw me a line over on Twitter @iamgeek32. Let’s have some fun before HBO Max and our screens yell out, “Get Over Here!”