V.G. Movies #44: Tekken: Blood Vengeance.

[Welcome back to the Evolution of Video Game Movies series. Every week, I will be moving forward through time, starting with the earliest and ending with the most recent of video game movies. I will be detailing the histories of the games and how the films came about, and both my and fan reaction to the adaptations. Practically all of my background information is either common knowledge or from Wikipedia. So without further ado, let's move on to the next film on the list.]


Um... nothing really new that I didn't share with here. Though in regards to the film itself, the game company wanted to make a film version of the game that didn't suck (like the live action one), so they decided to do it with animation. They also stress this has no ties to the live action one, as they want to distance themselves as far from that as they can. But that implies this one is good. So... is it?


There are a handful of game-based films out there that have both a live action and animated attempt at adapting. Sometimes you get something like Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie. Other times you get Resident Evil: Degeneration. So where does this fall? The film follows a teenage schoolgirl named Xiaoyu as an evil corporation forces her to work for them and transfer to a public international school to get close to a young man named Shin. But along the way, she meets another girl named Alisa who also seems to be interested in Shin (and, as it turns out, is a robot who works for another corporation). There's something special about Shin, and it might have something to do with an old family blood feud between Jin, Kazuya, and Heihachi.

I will say that, up until a certain point, I was actually really digging this movie. The story itself was interesting, and the mystery behind what was going on kept me intrigued. And then the characters were fun and the interactions between Xiaoyu and Alisa were entertaining. Where the story lost me was around the third act when it started to be explained. Things got very weird, and I'm assuming you have to be familiar with the games to actually understand what's going on. I honestly lost almost all interest in the film at this point, as I had zero idea what was actually going on anymore. It's not very well explained at all.

On the other hand, the animation is done incredibly well--sometimes to the point where the backgrounds look live action. It wasn't all totally perfect, and some things looked more "finished" than others, but on the whole, it looked really nice. Similarly (on a visual level), the action scenes were really entertaining. There weren't many at the start. In fact, there are only maybe 3-4 by the time the film reaches the climax. But then literally the entire last 30 minutes is a stretch of fight sequences that just keeps going... and going... and going. It's also at this point that even the fighting was getting to be uninteresting. Some of it worked, but at that point, it should have been toned down a bit (or maybe it was a fan service thing). But the other fights prior to that last 30 minutes are tons of fun and looked great both stylistically and animation-wise.

All of that being said, I don't have much else to say about the movie. I think it was good in quality and had actual talent involved. The story and action were really interesting up to a point (which is, at the very least, the majority of the film). And, as I've said, the animation was done very well. This is just a weird film to review, because I think it might work better for fans of the game than outsiders (similar in a way to Final Fantasy 7: Advent Children). There's nothing that upset me about the movie or that I strongly disliked, but I can't really get fully behind it, either. So... it is what it is.

I Am McLovin!

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