Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture is a poorly made and incredibly boring take on the fighting game series and even fans of the games will struggle to keep watching this for 95 minutes.
Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture starts in the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria, Egypt as a group of archaeologists unearth an armor plate. Suddenly, a crew of bandits attack the scientists to retrieve the piece of armor which is believed to have some magical properties. After that, we watch a series of vignettes that introduce the characters from the Fatal Fury franchise (which include Joe, Terry, Mai and Andy) as they reunite and right from the get go, we know this is going to end in the inevitable fight between the protagonists from Fatal Fury and the bandits.
Soon enough, mysterious assailants with skull masks start showing up in Neo Geo arcades or cocktail parties and attacking our people and luckily, some of the Fatal Fury protagonists are there to stop them. See, the bandits are looking for the Armor of Mars, a legendary armor that once belonged to Alexander the Great and is supposedly divided into different pieces that are scattered all over the world. This is just the beginning of a trip all over the world, since the protagonists will visit Japan, Rhodes Island, Germany, China, Israel and so on. Terry and his friends will also meet, Sulia Gaudeamus a girl whose brother is looking for the six pieces of the armor and should he succeed, he’ll be overtaken by a curse that will allow him to destroy entire cities.
For those keeping track, Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture follows the continuity of the two previous TV specials (Fatal Fury: Legend of the Hungry Wolf and Fatal Fury 2: The New Battle.) But despite being part of a larger storyline, Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture is more of a stand-alone film that features several original characters, though fans of the franchise will be happy to know that some of the most famous Fatal Fury characters have some cameo appearances.
Even when some of the most popular Fatal Fury characters make an appearance, the story has some serious problems. One of the most serious ones is the fact that this movie doesn’t provide a lot of context for what’s going on. I’ve played some of the Fatal Fury video games and I’ve watched its previous movies, but I don’t know that much about the specifics of the characters and their motivations. So I felt that the story’s a mess of unconnected events slapped together and on top of that, the animation is incredibly spotty. At times, it looks more than competent (especially for a movie that came out in the 90s) and at times, it looks rough around the edges. The English voice acting leaves a lot to be desired because the performances are exaggerated and over-theatrical, so if you have the chance, watch the Japanese version instead.
Also, there are sexual undertones, including shower scenes and some uncomfortable moments. To cure Terry, Sulia needs to lay on top of him naked. Not only that, but then she’s so tired of all the healing that she has to remain in that position for a while. Also, whenever a woman fights, her clothes are torn off or she loses her bra. The fan service can be too much and I constantly got the feeling that this movie was going out of its way to show naked women, resulting in some embarrassing moments.
At times, this is an adventure movie with an epic scope and at times, it’s a martial arts movie with exaggerated fight sequences, but most of all, this is a poorly made and incredibly boring take on Fatal Fury series and even fans of the two-dimensional games will struggle to keep watching this for 95 minutes straight.