Saturday , June 12 2021

Monster Hunter: World is being bombarded with reviews for its movie adaptation

Now we won’t be watching Paul WS Anderson’s Monster Hunter in the West for a good few more months. But the Chinese debut of the adaptation this week saw a massive reaction to one racist scene in particular, which has since moved to Monster Hunter: World’s Steam reviews and has forced the Capcom series makers to distance themselves from producing the movie.

As noted by PC Gamer, Monster Hunter: World changed from 17 negative reviews on December 3 to over 1000 the next day. According to industry analyst Daniel Ahmad, anger stems from one particular “joke” in Anderson’s film that – aside from being simply not funny – is allegedly based on historically racist amusement singing in English-speaking countries.

Now Ahmad notes that the inclusion of this line in general is surprising given China’s media regulations. Interestingly, the Chinese subtitles of the movie do not match the English audio at all. Instead, they refer to the Chinese idiom, a discrepancy that seems only to fuel the flames of controversy.

Capcom for its part issued a statement on the regional Weibo social network. They explain that they are aware of the situation and the controversy, but note that they were not involved in the production of the film and informed the relevant companies. That said, the inclusion of Milla Jovovich’s character and voice in World has apparently made some fans feel Capcom’s complicity.

Steam’s fancy diagrams and review filters try to hide most of the dissatisfaction, but you don’t have to dig too much to find the negative review pages – in both Chinese and English – citing the video. Ahmad’s thread continues with unconfirmed reports that the film has been withdrawn from screening in multiple theaters across the country, with others saying it will be re-released at a later date.

At home, yesterday’s planned launch in the UK has been postponed to 2021 due to concerns over Covid-19. When it finally gets here, I wouldn’t be surprised if this scene would end up on the cutting room floor.

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