Should you watch: Street Fighter II?

Feel free to ignore this if you’ve already seen the movie, especially if you think of it in a high regard. I cannot relate to any feelings of nostalgia here, and I did not watch the dubbed version either, so any extra appeal others may get from it were non-existent in my viewing experience.

should you watch street fighter 2

Okay, so with that out of the way, this movie has some really awesome animation and some pretty neat fight scenes. I say some, because a lot of them weren’t that enticing or just outright boring, despite the consistency of the choreography and spectacle being maintained all the way through (at least from what I could tell). That isn’t to say I think this is a bad movie, but I just felt like a lot of it was wasting my time, while just being pretty to look at:

chunli
*ahem*

Anyway, it’s got some rad scenes in it like the one at the beginning of the movie where Cammy runs up with her bodacious legs and uses her sweet gymnastic moves to break a dude’s neck. It’s one of the few genuinely satisfying scenes in the entire movie and I could rewatch that shot ten, twenty, fifty, maybe even a hundred times before possibly getting bored and it would still be a glorious piece of action in anime history.

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There’s also what I consider to be the best, and closest to what is a proper fight in this movie; the one between Chun-Li and Vega. And when I say proper fight I mean, in terms of storytelling – in how it pertains to the characters, their relationship with one another, the conflict and emotions involved, and generally being tied to the narrative in some way. Go ahead and roll your eyes for me wanting my fights in stories to have meaning and carry some weight to them. And this is honestly the only one in the entire movie that I feel like has any of that.

Chun-Li’s being prowled by an assassin (the same man who killed her father) at her most vulnerable; she’d just got done taking a shower and has her guard lowered from feeling relaxed drying off. Fair dues to her skill in detecting Vega just in time though. She’s able to dodge his attacks incredibly well for the most part, but a lot of this fight does have her being pinned down and backed against the wall.

chun-li-vs-vega

Vega trashes her about and absolutely brutalizes her in this showdown. It’s not pretty to watch, but damn is it a fast and entertaining fight. It’s not one-sided, but the choreography here does a good job portraying Vega as the one with the advantage. It’s surprisingly tense. And can I just say how glad I am that the characters don’t talk or monologue here? Because that seldom happens in anime. Not that I don’t like it when it does happen, but it’s just a refreshing change of pace to have a fight that’s mostly silent (apart from the audio of the movements and environment) and entirely focused on the fight. It makes Chun-Li fending for her life more consequential and memorable.

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Really left an impression on Vega too

It’s worth mentioning that Guile’s desperate chase to get to Chun-Li in time adds to the dramatic tension of the fight, because it implies it could go either way. If Chun-Li loses then Guile has to finish the fight for her, but if she wins then Guile will be the one to bring her to a hospital. Though, it may seem far-fetched for Chun-Li to win the fight after it being made clear how much of a disadvantage she’s at. But I thought the burst of emotions and raw tenacity she showed toward the end ensuring her victory was a satisfying payoff. After showing her true strength was finally able to absolutely demolish Vega and avenge her father. I mean she throws a freaking COUCH at the guy and then proceeds to unload all her willpower in to whooping his ass!

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*GAR as FUCK*

Not to bash on the other fights, since they’re generally all well-made and competently directed (the bare minimum of what I expect), compared to other fights in anime where I can hardly tell what the fuck is going on, because the cinematography is all over the place and it looks shit. However when I’m watching a movie and it’s got nice visuals, and cool as shit animation going for it, but its characters aren’t able to grab me, and the story isn’t anything to write home about, then not even the sickass fight scenes are going to be enough to keep me invested.

ajgsjbz
*yawn*

So, should you watch Street Fighter II? Ehhhh. If you don’t mind the dull characters and boilerplate story, and just want to see some sick ass animation, gorgeous character designs and visuals, cool fight scenes, and arguably the one of the best shower scenes in all of anime, then sure.

But if you think that the lack of any interesting plot, characterizations or really any actual developments inside an otherwise fairly generic action flick with little to no substance that will leave you bored to tears, then you’re probably better off skipping this one. Then again it is arguably the best Street Fighter movie (though the live-action one has a lovably hilarious camp and cheesy way about it), so if you’re a huge fan and haven’t see it, by all means check it out.

Or better yet, just watch AMVs with all the sweet fluidly animated fight scenes and none of that other stuff taking up your precious time. You can thank me later.

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disappears into crowd

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