T H E G R E A T S H A O L I N T O U R N A M E N T
A courtyard. A battlefield. We bear witness to a battleground.
The atmosphere is defined by the hammering of steel on brass. In the center of the battle ground, an unassuming Shaolin-styled warrior sits perfectly still, legs crossed over in a state of meditation. The monk is the Great Kung Lao. A legendary Shaolin warrior amongst Eastern circles. In the stands, raising from his throne, an elderly Asian gentlemen. Dressed in Eastern garb is the sorcerer Shang Tsung. A master of the dark arts.
Shang Tsung speaks in Mandarin; "Gentlemen of the arena". The gongs stop. The attention of the spectators focus on the throne. Shang speaks from the throne like a God as he continues on, "Our final battle will begin. It will pit Kung Lao..."
Shot of Lao seated, eyes closed.
Tsung proclaims loudly, "Against the full might of Shokan...", a pause that only adds to the tension, "Royalty".
Shot of a darkened tunnel entrance as the crowds cheer.
"...Prince Goro", a look of glee overcomes the sorcerer's face.
The spectators chime up with a chant, completely foreign to human ears as the servant's hammers once again clang against the circular brass shields. Lao's eyes open and he raises from his position. Unlike Tsung, Lao speaks in his native Cantonese tongue; "What cruel, sadistic game is this? I have defeated many men to arrive here. Why are you avoiding me, sorcerer? Your fear is obvious to all who bear witness to your death games"
Tsung's face becomes unnaturally distorted. Demonic. Otherworldly. The sorcerer speaks, "I am not the one who is fearful of a..." but he is cut off mid-sentence by Lao.
"Step down from your perch, sorcerer"
"You arrogant little mortal!", Tsung yells back in controlled anger.
Drums are beaten, the crowds continue their chants as we focus on the darkened tunnel entrance way. The drums get LOUDER. The chants become STRONGER. We get a POV, coming out of the tunnel. We keep track, tailing behind shoulders of a behemoth. Close-up of Lao, breathing easy. Eyes close again. The noise, the chanting, the drums are drowned out with silence. In the background, we see the image of a towering hulk.
Even though a normal man's instincts would kick in and panic, Lao remains calm. Focused. Years of Shaolin training are being put to the test as Lao curbs his jitters, his anticipation and a growing sense of overwhelming dread.
"A first of many", Tsung grins wickedly.
Lao's eyes remain closed. He speaks, "Sorcerer. Your arrogance will be your downfall"
Lao turns around. Eyes SLOWLY open then... Realization. This is something not of THIS world.