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Mortal Kombat (1995)

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2:38 | Clip
Three unknowing martial artists are summoned to a mysterious island to compete in a tournament whose outcome will decide the fate of the world.

Director:

Paul W.S. Anderson (as Paul Anderson)

Writers:

Ed Boon (video games), John Tobias (video games) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
756 ( 56)
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Lambert ... Lord Raiden
Robin Shou ... Liu Kang
Linden Ashby ... Johnny Cage
Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa ... Shang Tsung
Bridgette Wilson-Sampras ... Sonya Blade (as Bridgette Wilson)
Talisa Soto ... Kitana
Trevor Goddard ... Kano
Chris Casamassa ... Scorpion
François Petit ... Sub-Zero
Keith Cooke ... Reptile (as Keith H. Cooke)
Hakim Alston Hakim Alston ... Fighting Monk
Kenneth Edwards Kenneth Edwards ... Art Lean
John Fujioka ... Chief Priest
Daniel Haggard ... Assistant Director
Sandy Helberg ... Director
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Storyline

Based on the popular video game of the same name "Mortal Kombat" tells the story of an ancient tournament where the best of the best of different Realms fight each other. The goal - ten wins to be able to legally invade the losing Realm. Outworld has so far collected nine wins against Earthrealm, so it's up to Lord Rayden and his fighters to stop Outworld from reaching the final victory... Written by CyberRax

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Nothing In This World Has Prepared You For This See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for non-stop martial arts action and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rob Cohen, Steve Barron & Dwight Little were all considered to direct this movie, until the producers saw the movie Shopping (1994), directed by a then-unknown Paul W.S. Anderson, which was reportedly made for only $100,000. They loved his innovative and fresh approach, and were convinced he was the right person to helm the film. Anderson happened to be a fan of the Mortal Kombat game, and was very enthusiastic, even though he had absolutely no experience with visual effects. He immediately bought every book he could find on visual effects, matte paintings and computer-generated special effects, and became so knowledgeable on the subject that the producers were convinced he was right for the job. See more »

Goofs

(at around 37 mins) During the fight scene in the dining hall (where we see Kano eating and talking to Goro), Johnny Cage pulls a weapon out of the hands of one of the guards. In the next shot of him, where he's kicking another guard in the head, the weapon is not in his hands. In the last shot of him (forcing him into Sonya's out-stretched arm to knock him out), the weapon is back in Cage's hands. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Chan: No! Please!
Shang Tsung: You're brother's soul is mine!
Chan: Liu!
Shang Tsung: You will be next.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a statement in the closing credits: "Play Mortal Kombat 3 (1995) at arcades everywhere." See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK versions were missing shots of nunchaku, Scorpion's "snake" attacking Johnny Cage and a brief moment from the Art Lean/Goro fight. These cuts were waived for the 2003 EIV DVD. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Be Kind Rewind (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Control (Juno Reactor Instrumental)
Written by Traci Lords, Ben Watkins, Wonder
Performed by Traci Lords with Juno Reactor
Courtesy of Radioactive, Inc./MCA Records
See more »

User Reviews

 
Fun Martial Arts/Fantasy Film
25 January 2005 | by BrandtSponsellerSee all my reviews

A number of martial artists converge in China, from which they're taken to a seeming alternate dimension to fight in a tournament that's only held "once each generation". This time, however, the stakes are even higher, as the outcome of the tournament will determine the fate of the Earth.

Believe it or not, this is the first time I've seen this film, and I've not yet had experience with any of the games, the other films, the animated series, the lunchboxes, or anything else related to the Mortal Kombat universe. After watching the first film, however, I definitely will seek out some of the other material, as I enjoyed the film quite a bit--it earns an 8 out of 10 from me. At this point, however, I can't compare it to any other instantiations of Mortal Kombat.

The film is basically a combination of a classic Hong Kong-styled martial arts actioner and a fantasy that leans slightly to the horror side of that genre. To the film's benefit, it's also not something that either director Paul W.S. Anderson or writer Kevin Droney take too seriously--the film is ultimately an adaptation of a popular video game, after all. There is a tongue-in-cheek, slightly campy sense of humor and playful cheesiness throughout the film, the humor being primarily fueled from two characters, Johnny Cage (Linden Ashby) and Lord Rayden (Christopher Lambert). True, Lambert has a kind of almost smarmy campiness to anything he says or does, in any film, but for me, that's part of his attractiveness--it's a large part of what sold me on the Highlander films.

The fantasy aspect was something I didn't expect before watching the film. It was a very pleasant surprise. Being a huge horror fan, I was especially taken with the set design. The fantasy characters, such as Goro, and the fantasy traits of other characters, were well done and even subtle at times.

As for the fights, which are the propelling force behind the film, they're pleasantly varied and well choreographed, although having just watched Master of the Flying Guillotine (1975) again recently, I was slightly disappointed that the fights weren't more brutal and gory (and in fact, this is one of the areas where I subtracted a point). But they almost make up for the lack of violence but their imaginativeness, especially the fights with Sub-Zero and The Scorpion. That cleverness was required over brawn in most instances was also a nice touch.

Overall, this is a great film that any fans of martial arts or fantasy films should enjoy.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

The Threshold Network

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 August 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mortal Kombat See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Monica, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$23,283,887, 20 August 1995

Gross USA:

$70,454,098

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$122,195,920
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS (8 channels)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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