With the action packed, gore-fueled announcement of the new Mortal Kombat movie coming this April, I suddenly found myself giddy with all the enthusiasm of a McFlurry toting 90s child making his way to a questionably sanitary ball pit. The movie looks good. I mean, Real Good. So I find myself wondering just what were the best video game movies ever made. It took me all weekend, but with the sacrifice of my entirely non-existent social life, I put together the top 5 cinematic video game adaptations of all time.
5 - Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010)
With a star-studded cast and visibly high levels of production value, Disney threw their hat into the ring and didn’t do half bad. This was no Indiana Jones, but the sand swept adventure was engaging if only in an endearing manner. All in all, I’m not sure how well they captured the inherent solitude of the original games, but I enjoyed it. My girlfriend only agreed to go because she had a crush on Donnie Darko.
4 - Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children (2005)
Final Fantasy VII was the Michael Jordan free throw line dunk of the JRPG genre: beautiful, timeless, and known worldwide (yes, it’s a sportsball metaphor). EVERYONE wanted to see and learn more about what happened to Cloud and his companions, even people like me that didn’t have a Playstation. In 2005 we got that, and though it left more questions than answers, most of us figuratively lost our proverbial minds when One Winged Angel began to play. In a good way.
3 - Pokemon: The First Movie (1998)
Also known as Pokemon The First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back (which definitely fits on a billboard and rolls right off the tongue) was a staple for most childhood gamers from the 90s era. The cheese in this movie is at such extraordinary levels it could make a cow lactose intolerant, and my lord it didn’t make much sense for any stretch of the imagination... But you’d be lying if you said this movie didn’t make you tear up with arguably the most iconic power-of-friendship scenes known to human history. Historic.
2 - Sonic the Hedgehog (2020)
We all know the famous STH debacle regarding a certain frighteningly humanoid, blue-haired rodent, the extraordinary levels of crunch time that followed a redesign announcement, and white teeth that still haunt my dreams to this day, but somehow Paramount did it. Against all odds, they put together an oddly endearing movie that both parents and children celebrated, while somehow not upsetting fans in deviating pretty far from the major plot points outlined in the original games. Honestly, if you can keep the hardcore fans happy, especially Sonic fans, it means you’ve accomplished something worthy of historic praise.
1 - Mortal Kombat (1995)
I know, I know: there’s a new one coming out soon AND some of the animated ones have a superior story. But the ‘95 original Mortal Kombat movie was arguably the first live action video game adaptation without utterly laughable plot points, and a storyboard geared towards kids. This movie set the stage for a darker, more adult friendly formula that parents would actually want to bring their kids to, leading to movies such as Wing Commander, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, and Resident Evil. With an absolutely dynamite soundtrack, the mix of action, adventure, and comedy forged the first semi-serious cinematic adaptation that could stand the test of time.
This is all, of course, opinion and whichever movies you find bring joy into your heart, are the ones for you. I’ve also not watched every video game movie ever made, so there may be some movies you feel should be on the list but didn’t make it. Either way, my opinion is awesome and so are these movies.
Article by Tachyon