Street Fighter (film)

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"Something wrong, Colonel? You come here prepared to fight a madman, and instead you found A GOD?!"
M. Bison
"Quick! Change the channel!"
—Zangief

A Live Action Adaptation of the wildly popular Street Fighter series.

In the remote southeast Asian country of Shadaloo, the power mad dictator General M. Bison (Raul Julia) is trying to usurp power and take over first the country, then the world. OF COURSE!!! To fund his megalomaniacal schemes, he's captured several dozen relief workers, who totally are not from the Red Cross, and is holding them hostage for the sum of twenty billion US dollars. It is up to the Allied Nation forces, led by Col. William F. Guile (Jean Claude Van Damme), to get in there, take out Bison, and rescue the hostages. And they have three days to do so before hostages start dying. His immediate subordinates include Lieutenant Cammy (Kylie Minogue). and Sergeant T. Hawk (Gregg Rainwater).

Ace reporter Chun-Li Xiang (Ming-Na), joined by former champion boxer Balrog (Grand L. Bush) and sumotori E. Honda (Peter Navy Tuiasosopo) are sucked into the action, while smugglers Rye-you and Ken (played respectively by Byron Mann and Damian Chapa) conduct shady business deals with local Muay Thai god Viktor Sagat (Wes Studi). They, along with the cage fighter Vega (Jay Tavare) are thrown in jail. Meanwhile, Guile's old buddy Carlos "Charlie" Blanka (Robert Mammone) is used in Dr. Dhalsim's (Roshan Seth) Super Soldier project, to turn him into a green-skinned, super powerful monstrosity. Eventually all parties involved converge on Bison's base for the epic final showdown.

If you're even slightly familiar with the Street Fighter storyline (what little it has, anyway), you'll notice something seems a little... well, off.

The producers had some strange ideas about how to work the complex characters and storylines in the live action production. They didn't get a lot of them right, to say the least.[1] The film is sometimes lucky enough to go in the So Bad It's Good category due to the late Raul Julia's portrayal of M. Bison, who took the job knowing he was dying of stomach cancer and let his children pick out which movie would be his last, and apparently wanted to go out on a loud note for his final performance. Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who don't think this was enough to save the movie and continue to insist it's so bad it's just bad. Considering all the memes that stemmed from it, its most likely a Cult Classic.

Aspects of the movie were expanded on in the cartoon Street Fighter, which came out shortly after the film.

It's also been shown on G4's "Movies That Don't Suck" block, while Chris Gore makes snide remarks over the end credits.

Fifteen years would pass before another live-action Street Fighter film would be made. That one is called Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li.


Street Fighter (film) is the Trope Namer for:
Tropes used in Street Fighter (film) include:

"The road not taken..."

Bison: You dare to interfere?
[beat]
Ryu: ... yeah.

  • Bollywood Nerd: Dr. Dhalsim.
  • Brand X: The AN, analogous to the United Nations.
    • According to the director's commentary, the U.N. threatened to sue the pants off the filmmakers if they portrayed them.
  • Calling Your Attacks:

Cammy: THRUST KICK!.

M. Bison: You still refuse to ACCEPT...my godhood? KEEP your own God! In fact, this might be a good time to PRAY to Him! For I beheld Satan as he FELL FROM HEAVEN!...LIKE LIIIIIIGHTNIIIIIING!!!

Bison: You came from across the world to fight me soldier. Now's your chance.

    • Bison also attempts to kill the hostages in this manner by setting Blanka loose on them.

Bison: Your masters at the AN call me a wild beast. So be it. You do not deserve the martial dignity of a firing squad. You shall be killed by a wild beast!

"Pax Bisonica!"

Bison: Something wrong, Colonel? You come here prepared to fight a madman, and instead you found a god? [...] You still refuse to accept my godhood? Keep your own God! In fact, this might be a good time to pray to Him!

"You got...paid?"

Guile: I'm gonna get on my boat, and I'm going up river, and I'm going to kick that son of a bitch Bison's ass so hard that the next Bison wannabe is gonna feel it!

  • Hypocritical Humor: Chun-Li teases Cammy about her change in hairstyle toward the end of the movie, which Cammy responds with "Look who's talking!" Chun-Li looks up at her hairstyle and wordlessly concedes that Cammy is right.
  • Ignored Enemy: Ryu and Ken ignore their captors and have a brief fistfight in the prison camp, but it's a ruse to grab the keys to the lock.
  • I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: Notably Averted in the scene when Sagat is making his weapons deal with Bison, everybody is keeping their fingers off the triggers and appears to be pointing the weapons away from each other (though of course, they are in a large room and it's unclear if they are pointing the weapons at anybody else.)
  • It Got Worse: This line is actually used by Ken when he and Ryu are lamenting their situation in Sagat's arms market, saying it can't possibly get any worse, right before realizing they're in the middle of a stand off between Bison's mooks and Sagat's mooks.
  • Kaiju: The battle between E Honda and Zangief in the model of Bisonopolis looks like a Kaiju battle when viewed through a security camera.
  • Large Ham: Raul Julia's version of Bison is even more fondly remembered than Norio Wakamoto's portrayals.

Cracked.com: Raul Julia acted like his whole movie was a pantomime and displayed so little knowledge of the game that he probably thought a joystick was something you rented from a Thai ladyboy. But at least he was obviously enjoying himself. Raising the total number of people enjoying the movie to "One," or "One more than Legend of Chun-Li."

  • Load-Bearing Hero: Zangief in particular.
  • Logo Joke: The globe in the Universal Vanity Plate becomes embossed into the Shadaloo emblem seen on Bison's cap.
  • Mercy Kill: Subverted. Guile is about to give one to Blanka but is stopped by Dhalsim.
  • Mind Rape: Used on Blanka to transform him into a killing machine.
  • Mooks: The Shadaloo army, who, appropriately enough given how many are mowed down, wear red uniforms.
  • Motive Rant: Bison explains to Zangief and Dee Jay that his Super Soldier-fueled army is intended to unite the world under one rule (his).
  • Neck Lift: M. Bison does this to Dhalsim after Dhalsim makes the mistake of pressing Bison's Berserk Button.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Charlie is mutated and tortured halfway into insanity because Guile decided to make it clear (in front of the psychotic dictator) that he was friends with the leader of the Allied Nations forces.
  • No Pronunciation Guide: Ryu's name is incorrectly pronounced "Rayu". Ironically, Guile, who fails to pronounce every other word in the dictionary, is the only character capable of saying it right.
    • Bison does too, but he screws up Zangief's name right before that.
  • Non-Indicative Name: No actual street fighting takes place in the movie. In the one scene where it could have happened, Guile breaks things up before they can begin.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Guile in the games is American. Guile in the movie is... a Belgian-American immigrant? Classic JCVD at work.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Chun-Li as a reporter. "That's exactly...what I wanted you to think."
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Bison invokes this when informed of Guile's (fake) death, lamenting that he wanted to be one to defeat Guile.
  • Only Mostly Dead: Bison after the first part of the fight with Guile.
  • Politically-Incorrect Villain: Bison, especially with his "I know women and you are harmless" remark towards Chun-Li.
  • The Power of Friendship: Invoked by Bison, of all people.

"Had you worked together instead of against each other, you might have been successful."

FOR I BEHELD SATAN AS HE FELL FROM HEAVEN... LIKE LIIIIGHTNIIIING!!!

"Oh man. I shoulda stayed at Microsoft!"

"Well, I'm not going home. I'm going to get in my boat, and I'm going up the river, and I'm going to kick that son-of-a-bitch Bison's ass so hard, that the next Bison wannabe is gonna feel it. Now who wants to go home, and who wants to go with me?!"

  • Shock and Awe: Bison uses this against Guile in their final battle.

Bison: "This is merely Superconductor Electromagnetism."

Bison: I was hoping to face Guile personally on the battlefield. One gentleman warrior to another, in respectful combat. Then I would snap his spine.

  • Yeah! Shot: The film ends with the heroes striking poses similar to their victory poses from the game shortly after Bison's castle blows up.

Notes

  1. Then again this was at the time when the series was still in its infancy and hardly had any information on the characters let alone the story.