Plain characters, a one-dimensional plot and an absolutely horrendous English dub make this direct-to-video movie forgettable.
As a fan of fighting games, I’ve always been interested in the Fatal Fury series. Although it’s easy to dismiss it as another franchise that tried to clone the Street Fighter formula, Fatal Fury quickly mutated into series with its own quirks. But forget all that for now because Fatal Fury: Legend of the Hungry Wolf is an animated film that tells the story of some of the most popular characters from the series. Sadly, plain characters, a one-dimensional plot and an absolutely horrendous English dub make this direct-to-video movie forgettable.
Legend of the Hungry Wolf starts when young Terry and Andy Bogart witness their father’s murder. The man was playing with a bunch of random children in the park in South Town (there’s nothing weird about that) when he’s attacked by a group of men with knives and forced to fight his old rival Geese Howard and ends up dying of his wounds. Terry Bogart grows up to become a reckless martial artist who touches women in bars, starts brawls and enjoys drinking whiskey with men he’s just met, but he hasn’t forgotten about Geese, so he’s hoping he can reunite with other strong fighters and defeat the evil crime lord once and for all.
The film makes the mistake of introducing too many characters in a quick succession, explaining their flat motivations and having them fight one another to solve some sort of conflict. Most of these characters sign up for an upcoming tournament, fight each other and use some of the most recognizable attacks from the games (interestingly, Andy Bogart uses a Hadouken during the tournament.) Although fan-service is to be expected in this type of movies, Legend of the Hungry Wolf relies too heavily on references from the games.
If you watch anime from the 80s or 90s, you know what to expect in terms of story and that includes clichéd characters, overly sentimental moments that fall flat on their face and plain dialogue. Additionally, the English voice acting is absolutely dreadful and always feels out-of-place and over-theatrical which makes some scenes unbearable. If you have the option, look for the original Japanese version.
But even if you can find a copy of Legend of the Hungry Wolf in Japanese, this movie has same fundamental problems that make it hard to recommend. So unless you’re a fan of the Fatal Fury who wants to know everything about the franchise regardless of how obscure it is, you’ll find this direct-to-video film too dull and repetitive to enjoy. Legend of the Hungry Wolf is a rushed movie with underdeveloped characters and a simplistic story that few will enjoy.