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Rated PG-13
Copyright 1997 New Line Cinema
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 23 August 2009

The Characters:  

  • Liu Kang - This man's hair is longer than my wife's.
  • Kitana - What do you call a woman who is wearing a tight latex outfit, and locked in a spherical iron cage? That, my friends, is called a fetish. F-E-T-I-S-H.
  • Lord Rayden - Well, you look different.
  • Sonja Blade - She spends the whole movie angry, most likely because the first casualty of the merger of Earth and Outworld is Johnny Cage, and the second is Victoria's Secret. The poor woman has to spend the entire movie without a boyfriend or a bra. You would think that the latter would help rectify the prior, but it doesn't.
  • Major Jax Briggs - Apparently, his super strong cyborg arm enhancements are holding him back.
  • Nightwolf - The lost member of KISS who teaches Liu Kang how to become a CGI dragon.
  • Sub-Zero - David Schwimmer?
  • Shao Kahn - He might be the evil overlord of Outworld, but I am certain that his lungs are located on the inside of his cheeks. Look closely when he is breathing heavy. His stomach does not move, but his cheeks are going a mile a minute.
  • Queen Sindel - Oh boy, is she evil, what with her vest outfit and frizzy hair with the bleached strand and all.
  • Motaro - Supposedly a centaur, but he looks more like a dragon ogre to me.
  • Jade - She is here because...well, I guess because she is in the game.
  • Sheeva - She spends the whole movie jumping toward the camera, then raising all four arms to prove that she has confidence in her anti-perspirant. Squished by a steel cage.
  • Cyrax - ZOMG! Super yellow samurai predator cyborg!
  • Shinnok - Aren't you a little old to be dressing up as the dungeon master?

Buy It!

The Plot: 

The whole point of the first "Mortal Kombat" film is that by defeating Shang Tsung's warriors in the tournament, Liu Kang and the others prevent Shao Kahn's forces from invading Earth. All of that gets thrown out the window in the first few minutes of this sequel. Shao Kahn's forces start dropping out of the sky, and Earthrealm begins merging with Outworld. Man, this is stupid. Why did it matter if Liu Kang and the other fighters defeated Goro and Shang Tsung, if Shao Kahn can still invade Earth anyway? Don't give me that crap about Liu Kang saving his brother's soul from the evil sorcerer, either. I could care less. The rules of Mortal Kombat are that Outworld needed to win ten tournaments to invade Earthrealm. Well, they didn't win, but they are still invading. What happened to the rules?

Rules are very important. When we turn the faucet, water is supposed to start flowing. If you put your trash at the curb, the garbage truck will stop by to pick it up. Feeding a crisp dollar bill into a snack machine should cause a bag of M&M's to come out. It is very upsetting when the rules are broken, because it is unfair. People get hurt, or worse, when the fundamental truths that govern our existence are found to be flawed. Just ask all those people killed by falling vending machines.

Or you could ask any Army soldier returning from a one year Iraq deployment that finds out his wife is five months pregnant. That is also a serious violation of the rules.

Outworld's invasion of Earthrealm is an intriguing choice of special effects. It looks like Earth is being destroyed by flaming hemorrhoids from outer space. Faced with that sort of invasion, Rayden and the others make a break for it (except for Johnny Cage, who gets himself killed by Shao Kahn). The god protector of Earth shows Liu Kang how to use a secret underground network of wind tunnels to quickly travel anywhere on Earth. See, there are these big metal hamster balls. You get inside the ball, and the hurricane at the center of the Earth shoots the ball through the tunnels. The hard part is that you have to lean hard when your exit comes up, otherwise the ball might fall into a yawning river of lava, or, even worse, you might end up in New Jersey.

Garden State my a**.

Rayden takes his ball to a remote temple to ask the Elder Gods why the rules of Mortal Kombat have been broken. The three gods tell him to get over it. Elsewhere, Liu Kang and Kitana are looking for a powerful warrior named Nightwolf, but encounter a cyborg (Smoke) that looks suspiciously like the alien from "Predator." Luckily, Sub-Zero's younger brother shows up to defeat Smoke, and then tangles with Scorpion (who suddenly attacks) until the reptilian ninja grabs Kitana and disappears. Poor Liu Kang is left standing there without any hot Outworld princess wearing latex to ogle. He continues on his journey to find Nightwolf.

There is a very confusing section of the movie involving Nightwolf training Liu Kang in "animality." Even more confusing is that Jade suddenly shows up and offers Liu Kang a happy ending. When he balks at romantic friction, the female newcomer shrugs and puts her martial arts abilities to use against Shao Kahn's forces.

While the others were being punked by the Elder Gods or trying to escape the rub-and-tug mafia, Sonja finds Major Briggs. He is anchored to a metal table in a secret government laboratory. The pair have some adventures before meeting up with everyone else (minus Kitana, who is Shao Kahn's prisoner) at the Temple of the Elder Gods. That is where everyone gets to meet the new and improved thunder god. Let me tell you something: I think that Rayden is having a midlife crisis, which is sort of odd for an immortal. Not only that, but he is having the sort of midlife crisis where a guy bleaches his hair, becomes a vegan, and starts wearing all sorts of goofy outfits in a misguided attempt to look trendy.

Why can't he just get a Harley and a girlfriend? I don't want the immortal protector of Earth to look like a purple version of Peter Pan. To make matters worse, Rayden acts like he is the aforementioned vegan stereotype. He keeps telling the others that the only thing they need is to believe in themselves. This film is like some sort of after-school special, what with the self confidence message and a grown man dressing like Peter Pan.

I get the feeling that a rabidly loyal MK player wrote this script...when he was 13.

The group enters Outworld to save the Earth by rescuing Kitana and defeating Shao Kahn. During this, Rayden starts telling the others about his family. His dad is an elder god, Shao Kahn is his brother - all of the embarrassing personal information that a man going through his midlife crisis feels compelled to tell casual associates who don't care, don't know what to say, or don't want to know. Egad, this is even worse than an after-school special; it is daytime soap. What is going to happen next, Liu Kang learning that Kitana is his half sister? Sonja revealing that Jax is her baby's father? Kitana finding out that her father did not die in a plane crash like she thought he did?

Arrgggghhhh! I don't watch soap operas, because they drive me nuts. This movie is driving me nuts!

The film does end, and with a climatic final battle between good and evil that somehow manages to be just as nondescript as the rest of the fights that preceded it. Even Rayden's death fails to make the final battle interesting. I was like, "What? Lord Vegan is dead? Good! Who else needs to die so that this vapid film can finally end? Kill 'em!" When the fight is over, the script cheats by returning all of the characters to the temple where the movie started, and bringing Rayden back to life as an elder god. Sindel is also freed from her service to the forces of evil, so she appears looking happy and dressed as if she is ready to star in a feminine hygiene commercial.

Thank God that the film finally does end, and by "God" I don't mean Lord Peter Pan the Purple. To be honest, Rayden's transformation into an elder god makes him look like Pigpen from "Peanuts." Great, Earth's patron immortal is the Deity of Dirt.


Join us for a short tour of movies based on video games that vary from fairly bad to perfectly awful.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • The Nothing is an inflamed hemorrhoid on the anus of reality, and it's full of ninjas.
  • Earth's crust was once infested with giant subterranean hamsters.
  • Sometimes movie camera operators attack.
  • Making a snow angel is the first step in finding your true self.
  • The Colorado River is 25% bleach.
  • It does stand to reason that the father of a god would be an "elder god."
  • Outworld was destroyed by a marathon GWAR concert.
  • Reality is 1024 by 768 pixels.
  • When a god dies, he turns into a Rubik's Magic Puzzle that quickly decays into a singularity.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 2 mins - Wait a minute, I know how to stop the invasion! Somebody just needs to open a window and yell, "Moonchild!"
  • 11 mins - Is this part of the movie or a commercial for the new He-Man play set?
  • 40 mins - Girl, you have a serious chip on your shoulder.
  • 47 mins - He looks like a middle-aged, purple Peter Pan.
  • 61 mins - Just in case anyone wanted to know what Mortal Kombat: Dance Dance Revolution would look like.
  • 64 mins - The movie wasn't stupid until that happened. Seriously.
  • 78 mins - Everybody start clapping your hands. If you want to save Liu Kang, you have to clap your hands!

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note mkombatii1.wav Kitana: "Somehow he has opened gateways to your world."
Liu Kang: "I thought our victory in Mortal Kombat closed those portals."
Rayden: "What closes can also open again."
Kitana: "What is that supposed to mean?"
Sindel: **Screeechh!**
Kitana: "Mother, you're alive!"
Sindel: "Too bad you...will die!"
Green Music Note mkombatii2.wav Jax: "Look, you drag me out the base with some lunatic killers after us. Put me in a spinning ball; take me halfway around the world. If I'm going to die today, at least tell me why!"
Sonja: "Nobody told me why Johnny had to die."
Jax: "What is it with you, and who the Hell is Johnny?"
Green Music Note mkombatii3.wav Rayden: "Where is Kitana?"
Liu Kang: "Kahn took her. It's all my fault."
Rayden: "This is not about blame. We're together in this. Each of us must help and support the others, like a family. What's the deal with your arms?"
Jax: "I've known you one minute, and you dissing me already?"
Rayden: "I mean no disrespect. You have real skills, but those arms are not your strength, they're your weakness."
Jax: "Yeah well, thanks for the tip, but these things right here - state of the art."
Rayden: "Faith in yourself is all you need."
Green Music Note mkombatii4.wav Shinnok: "You seem confident that Sindel will capture Rayden and his mortals in your trap."
Shao Kahn: "I promise you, father, on my soul, all the milleniums of planning will be rewarded. You will be proud."
Shinnok: "Know this: I will take your soul myself, if you fail me now!"

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipmkombatii1.mpg - 6.0m
Something that happens quite often in the film is that somebody gets hit, then goes flying through the air. So, without further ado, here is somebody getting hit, then flying through the air.

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