Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li
Movies based on Video Games have a very bad history and this franchise started badly with the Jean Claude Van Damme led Street Fighter, so it had to forge a hellacious uphill battle and I think it failed wonderfully and may have made a cult hit. For some reason they continue to avoid the fight tournament set-up which is the basis for the video game (although it is hinted at in the ending), as this movie follows Chun Li (Smallville‘s Kristen Kreuk) on a mission for vengeance against the evil M. Bison who kidnapped her father long ago.
The movie opens with the kidnapping as we see Balrog (Daredevil‘s Michael Clarke Duncan) destroy their house to get his hands on Chun Li’s father. M. Bison (Walking Tall‘s Neal McDonough) strolls in and establishes his suave smiling evil presence and a sad young Chun-Li has to watch her father get dragged away. She grows up to be a rich pianist, but receives a mysterious scroll after a performance and after deciphering its contents throws away her whole life to wander Bangkok alone until a shadowy figure shows her the path of the ninja… or something. The movie also follows two cops who are investigating Bison played by Moon Bloodgood (Terminator Salvation) and Chris Klein (American Pie). These scenes are ridiculous and usually involve Moon Bloodgood in nonsensically cleavagy (A word that should be invented) outfits and Chris Klein delivering overblown lines that would make David Caruso blush.
The action sequences vary in their execution, although if Chun Li is involved it usually involves Charlie’s Angels level wire work. Scenes where the wire work is kept at a minimum utilize excessive fast forwarding/slow motion action which is lousy, but not nearly as cheap as gravity defying wire work and makes punches from Balrog look devastating. Another bonus is that no one is punched in this movie without flying into and destroying a piece of furniture (A drinking game based on this would be a death sentence). Wait for it…Chun Li does the upside down twirling attack from the game which was so bad I loved it.
The movie has some crazy WTF moments like the ceremony that made M. Bison evil and with Balrog and Bison chewing the scenery I think this movie might find a cult following as a wild bit of wonderful nonsense. I had to watch the movie on my own, but I think with a few friends we would have been laughing out loud from beginning to end (especially the end). However, the wait for a legitimately decent video game movie continues.
Rated and Unrated Versions (Not a lot of additions in the Unrated Version)
Audio Commentary with Patrick Aiello, Ashok Amritraj, Neal McDonough, and Chris Klein
14 Deleted Scenes
Becoming a Street Fighter
Chun Li: Bringing the Legend to Life
Fox Movie Channel Presents Making a Scene
Recreating the Game: Arcade to Film Comparisons (Hardly worth including)
Marvel vs. Capcom 2 Sneak Peek
The Fight in Black and White – Storyboard Gallery
Behind the Fight – Production Gallery
Disc 2 – Street Fighter Round One: FIGHT! Animated Comic Movie for a Limited Time Only
Disc 3 Digital Copy with Blu-ray Only