Sunday, August 15, 2010


You’ve probably already read my general thoughts on the film, but if it not, please check it out first! This review is basically a continuation of the first one, but with added notes that the hardcore Tekken and fighting game fans might want to know. As such, this contains MASSIVE SPOILERS. You have been warned.


Anyway, as I’ve mentioned, I’m a huge fan of Tekken but I’m not nearly as into the series as I am with Street Fighter, though. I played it religiously from Tekken 1 until Tekken Tag Tournament (the fourth installment in the franchise), but then skipped Tekken 4, and came back only for Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection for the PS3. I actually haven’t even bought and played Tekken 6, but it has nothing to do with my hatred for the Bob character, I swear. If that was the case, then I wouldn’t have bought and played Street Fighter IV as well, right?

Tekken Movie UK DVD Box art
It’s just that I didn’t have the budget when the game first came out, and I just kept putting off buying it. I’m currently a full time graduate student at one of the top universities in my country, blogger, and I still work out and practice martial arts very regularly, so I don’t have that much free time for video games at the moment. When I do buy a video game, I tend to play that for months and months on end. Right now, I’m currently replaying Grandia because it came out on the PSN, which I alternate from time to time with Super Street Fighter IV.

So that’s my Tekken background in a nutshell. Am I any good at the game? Well, I can say that I’m decent, but nowhere near what many would truly qualify as “good”. I just tend to play around and not take it too seriously.


What’s intriguing about the plot is how they managed to combine the stories of Tekken 1, 2, and 3, and make a fan go “yeah, that could work”, but then they botch it up by making the finished story flow terribly. I’ll note down the details as I remember them:

1. They basically take the Tekken 1 story where Kazuya wants to kill Heihachi and take over the corporation, splice it into the Tekken 3 story of Jin being motivated to take action because of his mother’s death, and having some elements of Tekken 2 serve as back story so that we know Jun used to be a Tekken fighter and so on.

2. As mentioned, the movie takes place in a post-apocalyptic future ruled by a handful of corporations. The problem is, they act more like corrupt governments rather than corporations, so why bother calling them as such?

3. Jin powers up literally every time he fights. The pattern is like this:

Marian Zapico as Anna 
a) Jin is very impressive at the start of the match, so the audience cheers him on;
b) His opponent counterattacks and beats the living crap out of Jin and comes extremely close to victory;
c) Jin reminisces about a specific training day with his mom and uses his recollection to dominate his opponent in the cheesiest and most convenient way possible and win the fight.

Again, this happens literally every time he fights. It becomes very, very annoying after a while, but it kind of helps that most of the fight sequences are still fun to watch in their own way.

4. The private soldiers in the movie are called “Jackhammers”, and are called “Jacks” most of the time throughout the film. Interestingly, the slums where Jin lives is called the Anvil, and the high and mighty tournament is called “Iron Fist” (which is also the name of the corporation, but in Japanese), so there’s this whole “Iron Fist from above beating on the Anvil below with the (Jack)hammer” symbolism that the filmmakers are going for.

5. Oddly enough, The Jacks all speak Japanese. They are literally the only characters that do this, and it is never explained why. From what I could tell though, they at least speak Japanese well.

Jon Foo as Jin
6. Steve Fox is an old, retired fight manager in the movie that dies about halfway through the film by getting shot. Yeah, that’s right.

7. Christie Monteiro is there to literally just be hot. Jin didn’t really need a female counterpart inside the tournament because it was established early on that he already has a girlfriend who could have had more screen time, but whatever, right?

8. Nina and Anna Williams are assassins, like in the video games’ story, and at one point Kazuya orders them to kill Jin. The scene takes place in the dark and is pretty darn stupid.

9. Speaking of Nina and Anna, they just completely disappear in the second half of the movie without explanation. Alright, fine, Nina loses in the competition, so she’s out, but what about Anna? As far as I can tell, she was there only so Nina could have her sister around. 

10. Jin’s costume (his gloves and pants) is fully incorporated such that the writers took the trouble to create an origin story for it. The reasons they're there are simple and completely acceptable to me. His pants are there because he needs to be more recognizable in the competition, and his gloves are there because his hands are heavily injured during the night attack by Nina and Anna (either Jin is really good at blocking deadly weapons in the dark or the sisters are just really lousy assassins).
Dragunov and Christie from the film

11. Kazuya just whines throughout the entire movie. No kidding. The big badass villain of the series spends almost the entire length of the movie crying to Daddy because he won’t immediately hand over the corporation to him (eg: “Why won’t Daddy die so I can inherit the corporation?! I know! I’ll kill him myself! Yeah, that’ll speed up the process!”) And that’s the primary motivation of the main villain of the piece. Yes, that’s very lame.

12. It also isn’t clear why Kazuya is so hell bent on immediately taking over the Tekken Corporation. He’s clearly the second in command and so has a lot of control over the company and its resources already. This means that he’ll also inherit it when Heihachi passes away, which shouldn’t be too long, given how old he’s portrayed in the film. So there’s really no clear reason aside from him being so brain dead impatient.

13. There’s an homage to Tekken 5 where Kazuya walks away from a burning building saying “Heihachi Mishima is dead”. Pretty cool nod to the fans.

Luke Goss as Steve Fox
14. The film has fatalities. That’s right. Fatalities. When Kazuya finally wrests the Tekken Corporation from his father’s hands, he decides that fatalities would boost the viewer ratings of Iron Fist (is that what Tekken is? A broadcasting company? Then why are they so evil? What’s the use of being an evil broadcasting company? And if they’re the only corporation in existence within that area / country / whatever, then who manufactures the food? Ugh). More on this later.

15. As mentioned, characters die in the film, from fatalities or whatever. So, if you have a favorite character that’s in this film, you may or may not be seriously offended when he permanently goes bye bye.

16. I honestly thought that Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa played Heihachi brilliantly in the film. I initially thought that it would be a stretch after watching the trailer, but he really surprised me; the guy is really awesome. Too bad he never got to fight, though.

17. Kazuya is a wuss until the end. Not only does he challenge Jin after he’s already been beaten up by Bryan Fury, and not only does he do this while wielding a double-bladed ax in each hand, but he also gets beaten extremely quickly. Wuss.
Raven and Dragunov

18. There’s hints of a sequel at the end. But would you want one?


    The director, writers, producers, etc. obviously had some sort of balancing act going on here, as they didn’t want to alienate certain Tekken fans (eg: fans who played only the early games vs. fans who have only played the newer games). They thus selected characters from various points in the timeline so pretty much every fan could relate to the movie in one way or another. This is a list of characters in the movie, which game they originated, and if they lived or died:

    1. TEKKEN 1 
      1. Kazuya Mishima
      2. Heihachi Mishima (Dies from a gunshot. Or was it an explosion? I’m not sure; a Jack has a gun to his head, then the building they're in explodes. You tell me.)
      3. Nina Williams
      4. Anna Williams
      5. Marshall Law
      6. Yoshimitsu
      7. Jack (In some form or another. The Jackhammers don’t really look like Jack in anyway. They look more like black storm troopers)
      8. Paul Phoenix (only referenced as a past Tekken fighter. He never actually appears in the film)
    2. TEKKEN 2
      1. Jun Kazama (Dies in an explosion)
      2. Eddy Gordo
    3. TEKKEN 3
      1. Jin Kazama
      2. Bryan Fury
    4. TEKKEN 4
      1. Steve Fox (Dies from a gunshot)
      2. Christie Monteiro 
    5. TEKKEN 5
      1. Raven
      2. Sergei Dragunov (Dies from having his neck broken by Bryan Fury. Yup: Fatality!)
    6. TEKKEN 6
      1. Miguel Rojo
    Ian Anthony Dale as Kazuya


    That’s all I can really recall for now. I’ll update this in the future if something else comes up. Anyway, any questions from the fans that I could answer? Reactions about this article? Please leave a comment below as I’d love to hear your thoughts!

    All the great pics in this article were from Tekkenpedia's Tekken Film page.

    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...