Video Game Theater – Mortal Kombat: Rebirth

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On 2010 a short film directed by Kevin Tancharoen with his own interpretation of the Mortal Kombat universe was released on YouTube and it definitely changed the minds of those who have always believed that a good film based on a game was simply impossible. Interestingly enough, the short film has a strong emphasis on realism and supernatural elements so proper of the series (such as the Outworld) aren’t even mentioned.

For the uninitiated, the film is set in Deacon City in 2010, where Jackson Briggs (commonly known as Jax) is interrogating a man in the police station. As the police captain states, in this alternate universe Reptile eats the heads of its victims, Baraka is a twisted doctor who has pierced his face and inserted sharp blades into his arms, old action hero Johnny Cage has been murdered and on top of that, Shan Tsung is organizing an underground tournament. I won’t spoil the conclusion as that is something that you must experience for yourself, but I’ll just say that it’s pretty intense.

At the time of its release, most people thought that this was an official teaser trailer to either an upcoming film or game. Although it definitely seemed like a viral marketing campaign to announce a project like that, this ended up being neither of those. Instead, Rebirth intended to be Tancharoen’s pitch for a movie. In this way, he would make an attempt to reboot the film franchise. Eventually, Rebirth evolved into a nine-episode web series called Mortal Kombat: Legacy that was extremely well received by critics and particularly by fans of the fighting games.

During the following weeks I’ll be posting all the episodes of the web series in this section of the site. In the meantime, you may watch Mortal Kombat: Rebirth.