It’s been years since we’ve seen a Super Mario Brothers movie return to theatres after a less than amazing live-action version years ago. Well, it was worth the wait!
The Super Mario Brothers animated movie takes us through an origin story of sorts for the Mario Brothers as they get transported from New York City to the Mushroom Kingdom! Nintendo fans will quickly recognize the nostalgia trip of sound effects, visuals, and characters from years of Nintendo gaming.
Mario (Chris Pratt) and Luigi (Charlie Day) do an excellent job voicing the characters. I originally was a bit skeptical as the voices deviated from the games but as the movie went on I was immersed in the fresh take and quickly moved on from the differences.
Although the story is basic, like much of the Mario games, you are definitely locked in for the visuals, comedy and general fun of the flick. As an avid Nintendo, especially Mario, fan growing up… I found myself scanning scene to scene spotting east eggs and references. I was not disappointed as shops, visuals, and everything you could spot were a nod to something in Nintendo’s history. Heck, Mario’s room featured some posters on the wall of some classic NES games… some deep cuts for the hardcore fans.
The visuals of the movie were incredible. Bright and colourful with lots of detail. The folks at Illumination outdid themselves. The movie just had a general feel-good vibe.
As far as the writing, it was fairly quirky and witty. I found characters like Toad to be charismatic. The most notable side character is a Luma star character from Mario Galaxy. This little blue star steals the screen with its hilarious dialogue and introspection.
Bowser (Jack Black) outdoes himself with a hilarious and sometimes musical take on the big bad turtle. Excellence per usual from Black. The movie’s tone was set right at the start with the epic nostalgia-fueled “commercial” the Mario Brothers show off for their plumbing service. That fun-filled humour and charismatic approach made for a memorable experience.
Those new to Mario or perhaps long-lived Nintendo fans alike will enjoy the movie. As I mentioned, the story may not pull you in but everything else will! So if you are looking for an engaging story, you are looking in the wrong place. If you are looking for a fun time and some laughs, you will love it. Highly recommend for all ages. I’ll be watching it again! For that, I’ll be giving it a high rating based on its goal which it hit.