I got my chance in playing Tekken before though I’m not a video games buff. Other than Jin and Yoshimitsu I’m not familiar with some of the fighters in this movie. Maybe I’ve seen most of them in the selection menu, but they are not my usual choice in the battle game. Most of the time I’ll pickup King, Lei, Paul and Asuka. As a film based from a fighting game series I don’t expect much from this film. Surprisingly though… it’s actually NOT bad.
The story is fairly simple and predictable. Like most fighting games it revolved around the fighting tournament. The story focus in one character which is Jin Kazama, his quest for vengeance, the Mishima bloodlines & the iron fist. Nothing much new actually but I like the fact that they tried to create some character relationships than just make a generic fighting flick movie. It takes a more gritty, real-world approach to the storyline breaking away from most of the supernatural and strange elements from the games. A nice touch that results in a solid, pretty easy to understand martial arts adventure, at the very least.
The casting is fair enough. Jon Foo (Jin Kasama) delivers well in the sullen, angry role of the revengeful pretty boy. He is believable as a young talented fighter as if he really earns every hard-won match. Ian Anthony Dale (Kazuya Mishima) and Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (Heihachi Mishima) are pretty good too. Kelly Overton (Christie Monteiro) is ok. Candice Hillebrand (Nina Williams) looks too old for the role. And her costumes needs some fixing. Actually the costumes are good except for that one. After checking the video characters, I find that they wear the same style like in the video game. I think they are pretty accurate. Yoshimitsu has the most faithful look from the video game though he doesn’t talk much in this film.
The fight choreography are well executed. It was realistic enough to enjoy and digest. The fighter look like they mean business when they fight inside the arena. Battles doesn’t look fake, they are pretty good and fierce. In fact, they look extremely painful, especially those battles where real life martial artists are fighting on each other. None of the fight scenes were disappointing. They really looked like they put all their effort on their stunts and actions. The chasing scene from the first part of the movie wherein Jin is running from some bad guys and the Jackhammers (some kind of police robots of Tekken Corporation) is nicely done, it’s pretty intense. The chasing stunts are quite thrilling.
As for the settings, Tekken is set in dystopian near future year 2039 which is supposed to be futuristic, but I didn’t find it on that level. I feel it’s more like a post war era setting. Most of the scenes are set at night, or in shadows with spotlights, gasoline fires or neon lights.
Tekken was actually quite good compared with all the other game series turned to film. I mean as far game-turned-movie goes this one was actually pretty decent. As much as I want to compare this film to another fighting game Street Fighter : The Legend of Chun-Li, I can’t remember much about the last film. I am certain that I’ve watched The Legend of Chun-Li before but unfortunately I can’t remember much from this film. Compare to Dragon Ball Evolution Tekken is way better (WAY WAY Better). Tekken’s gritty action scenes and fast-paced story make it one of the better video game movies. This movie was made for entertainment like the game itself, so disregard about the inconsistency in adaptation this movie is enjoyable and pretty nice film.