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Mortal Kombat 2021 Will Push R-Rating All The Way To The Limit

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The upcoming Mortal Kombat reboot will push the R-Rating to the limit, according to director Simon McQuoid. The video game franchise has long been known for its gruesome violence, but when Mortal Kombat had two live-action films made in the 1990s, both were PG-13, leaving them with a legacy of being cheesy and not a true representation of the franchise. However, the long-awaited reboot, which will release on April 16 on HBO Max and in theaters, will have an R-Rating and its signature bloody violence, and according to Todd Garner, “one of the most brutal fights” he has ever seen on film.

After months of promises, the film’s record-breaking trailer proudly showcased its R-Rating in all its glory with a trailer full of blood and fatalities, including Kano ripping out the heart of one of his foes. The action, alongside the spotlight shining on iconic characters, such as Scorpion and Sub-Zero, only enhanced the expectations and excitement of fans. McQuoid has stated on more than one occasion that they have respected the source material, and providing the audience with an R-Rated experience is one of the important elements to respecting the Mortal Kombat legacy. However, McQuoid also informed Screen Rant that it’s important that they amplify the material “to a whole new level,” and one way they may be doing that is by pushing the R-Rating to the limit.

In an interview with SFX Magazine (via GamesRadar), McQuoid discussed his upcoming martial arts film and the popular topic of its R-Rating. When asked about the level of action and brutality in the film, the director informed SFX that:


"We wanted to push the [blood, gore and fatalities] right to the limit. Obviously, there’s a point where the film becomes unreleasable if you push it too far, and that would be a very unwise return on investment for the studio. But from day one it’s been, ‘Okay, we’re doing this and we’re going to do it properly.’"


The fact that they want to push the blood and fatalities “right to the limit” will be music to the Mortal Kombat fan bases’ ears. Although the trailer and even the teaser to the prologue have shown the level of violence fans expected and wanted, it’s reassuring for fans to hear that there is much more to come. The comment from the director also makes sense as he previously said they had “drums of blood sitting around” on set, which is further evidence of them attempting to push the boundaries with their bloody violence. Also, considering the focus on specific relationships, like Sub-Zero and Scorpion, it appears the creative team has not lost sight of the story while upping the ante for the action sequences.

Judging by the director’s comments, it appears they’ve found a good balance with the action as well, ensuring it doesn’t go too far for Warner Bros.. A fact that’s important, considering Garner has said they hope to make a sequel, which would likely feature the absent Johnny Cage. The level of excitement Mortal Kombat has generated puts them in a good position to potentially make a sequel. But Mortal Kombat will ultimately have to deliver come April 16, and McQuoid and co. will hope that pushing its R-Rating to the limit helps make the film a success.

Mortal Kombat (2021)
Release Date: Apr 16, 2021

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