The Mortal Kombat Film Trailer Nails The Game’s Violence

The trailer for the new Mortal Kombat movie, releasing on April 16, finally dropped, and it’s every bit the gory, bloody mess that an MK movie should be.

The story, as explained in the trailer, is that Cole Young (Lewis Tan) realizes the dragon-shaped birthmark on his chest is some kind of brand calling him to participate in the titular martial arts tournament. With the help of Special Forces soldiers Sonya (Jessica McNamee) and Jax (Mehcad Brooks), he seeks out fellow warriors in the fight against Outworld. Those include the familiar faces of Liu Kang (Ludi Lin), Kung Lao (Max Huang), and (my beloved main) thunder god Raiden (Tadanobu Asano).

Presumably the tourney will still be hosted by Shang Tsung (Chin Han), given that he shouts the old familiar line of “Finish him!” The trailer shows Kano (Josh Lawson) in the same roster as the rest of the heroes, but I highly doubt he’s on the side of good for altruistic reasons.

Keen-eyed viewers will be able to spot the likes of Mileena, Reptile, Kabal, Goro and either Noob Saibot or Smoke (it’s hard to tell). Goro’s was the biggest shock to me, as I hadn’t seen the character mentioned in any of the lead-up to the trailer’s release. There are also a few familiar fatalities, such as Liu Kang’s fiery dragon and Kano’s heart rip.

And of course, it wouldn’t be Mortal Kombat if we didn’t get a big fight scene between Scorpion (Hiroyuki Sanada) and Sub-Zero (Joe Taslim). It’s not yet clear how the former fits into the story — we see several scenes of him in his human form as Hanzo Hasashi, but he appears to already have his revenant powers. This is clearly the Bi-Han Sub-Zero, and likely working against the rest of Earthrealm’s warriors somehow.

Naturally, Scorpion shouts “Get over here!” When the trailer was leaked in Russian earlier today, that was the one line not translated.

Most of the original game’s cast is present and accounted for, with the sole exception of Johnny Cage. The Hollywood goofball’s presence appears to have been superseded by Cole Young as the audience surrogate. I don’t see why Lewis Tan couldn’t have played Johnny Cage, personally, but who knows — maybe that’s the big twist and it’ll only be revealed in the movie when he drops into a split and punches someone in the groin.