Mortal Kombat Reboot Has Officially Been Rated

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The reboot of Mortal Kombat arrives next month, and every new piece of information released about it makes viewers ever more impatient. On that note, the film has now received an official rating by the MPAA, and it’ll shock absolutely nobody that it’s been handed an R.

This is, appropriately, for “strong bloody violence and language throughout and some crude references.” Again, while this comes as no surprise, seeing it lain down by an official body promises that what we’ve seen in the trailer is representative of the whole film. With such a declaration, it can also be further hoped that the experience will wash away the acrid taste of mediocrity left by the watered-down adaptations from 25 years ago.

Over the top violence has been a staple of the series right from its inception, of course, initially forming part of a strategy to distinguish the game from Street Fighter II, which in the early ‘90s was the dominant fighting title and every subsequent release was seen as a pale imitation of it. Mortal Kombat began life in arcades, its notoriety growing upon children excitedly telling their friends of seeing one fighter rip the head off a defeated enemy and tear out their spine, or another pull off his face to reveal a skull and promptly breathe fire to incinerate his opponent to a skeleton. The moral panic that ensued, along with similar concerns provoked by Night Trap and Lethal Enforcers, led to the creation of the ESRB system.

As well as accurate representation of its myriad iconic characters, horrific and deplorable violence is what we want and expect from Mortal Kombat, and even though the trailer has already promised that this is exactly what we’re going to get, having it officially declared only serves to heighten excitement for its release.