The Mortal Kombat franchise is one of those few franchises that I can say is “mine.” As fans, we often tend to take ownership of properties whether we should or not, and my admiration of MK certainly fits that description. It’s why I felt confident calling Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge the best piece of non-game media this franchise has had since the 1995 motion picture.
This follow-up, Battle Of The Realms, unfortunately doesn’t succeed as much as the previous picture. What we have here is a story that doesn’t just want to retell Mortal Kombat 2 & 3, it aims to retell multiple games in one, barely giving those important story elements time to breathe. This also falls into the trap that almost every movie in this franchise does, and that’s an overload of characters. It’s great that some of the lesser known characters get screen time. It would be even nicer if they were as memorable as they were in the games.
The great groundwork laid by Scoption’s Revenge is lost in this muddled, mess of an animated flick. Many fans think Mortal Kombat is all about the blood, guts, and violence. And true, Battle Of The Realms delivers in spades there. But much like many casual fans of this franchise, this film forgets there’s a wonderful story underneath all of it. These characters, and this franchise, deserve better.
While it’s fine to look at in 4K (although some aliasing issues arise,) the HDR is why you want to watch this set. Raiden’s eyes glow the brightest they have in white, and even certain other character powers shine powerfully. Simply put, only Disney’s animation offerings will look better than this.
The DTS-HD track loaded on this thing is stunning, making you feel like you’re right in the middle of these brutal exhibitions. Never does balance feel off, and I want to give a special credit to John Jennings Boyd and Eric V. Hachiklan for their score mimicing many different riffs from the games. This fan is proud!
Starting us off is an audio commentary from producer Rick Morales and writer Jeremy Adams. To their credit, they address the issues with the film, and also talk about other various facts and easter eggs. A very entertaining listen.
“The God And The Dragon – Battling For Earthrealm” clocks in around seven minutes and has various cast members discussing the picture. A breezy, if fluffly, EPK.
“Voice Of Kombat” – Runs nine minutes and shows the voice cast behind-the-scenes recording lines and providing insight. This was my personal favorite of the EPK’s available, and a great watch.
“Kombat Gags – Gag Reel” – A four minute entertainer that features alternate lines, more cursing, and cast interviews. Well worth the time.
Conclusion & Final Thoughts
While not the worst piece of media the Mortal Kombat franchise has produced, this is a huge missed opportunity. It’s not rage inducing like some other films in this franchise, but the disappointment can be felt once it’s over. This 4K UHD set provides good video and even better audio, and some breezy but fun extras. Any fan of this property like me needs this set. Casual viewers can give it a rental, as can animation fans.
With all this said, I do hope they get a third one green-lit.