New Mario movie appeals to fans

New Mario movie appeals to fans

Laila Tolbert, Staff Writer

Mario is a character that needs no introduction. From Mario Kart to Donkey Kong everyone is least familiar with the plumber with a mustache that wears a red hat and overalls. He’s often called the king of gaming for this reason. A new video game is no struggle for Mario, but the Italian plumber faces a new obstacle once more: the big screen. 

The Super Mario Bros. Movie (dir. Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic) isn’t Mario’s first time in theaters. But many were nervous for this new take on Mario. Rightfully so with the movie being made by Illumination Studios, the same film studio that produced movies such as Despicable Me, The Lorax and The Minions. Then the news just seemed to get worse with the voice casting revealing Chris Pratt as Mario, Ana Taylor Joy as Princess Peach, Jack Black as Bowser and Seth Rogan as Donkey Kong. Many weren’t pleased with this lineup as they felt that actual voice actors should’ve been casted instead. 

Once the movie was released, the critics hated it; Rotten Tomatoes gave the lowest score for any Illumination movie ever coming in with a score of 58 percent. Despite all this negativity, the audience loved it. 

The plot of the movie is quite simple: the Mario brothers Luigi and Mario get sucked into the Mushroom Kingdom after a plumbing job gone wrong, but Luigi gets kidnapped by Bowser so now it’s up to Mario, Princess Peach and Toad to save him.

Personally I’m with the audience with this one. When I went to see the Mario movie I didn’t have incredibly high expectations. When I left the theater I was pleasantly surprised with just how much I enjoyed it. I thought listening to Chris Pratt as Mario would be a cringe-inducing experience but surprisingly it wasn’t due to Mario being from New York. In this movie Chris Pratt does a New York accent instead of the typical Mario voice many have come to know. The movie to me at least felt like a love letter to fans with many Easter eggs that people like myself who are really into the Mario franchise would get. 

For example, Charles Martinet, the most known voice of Mario, makes a cameo in this movie to voice two characters. Another example is the King Bob-omb from Mario 64 that also appeared in the movie. 

Mario hasn’t always been known for his story, but the action scenes in this movie make this a fun watch. The scenes never really drag on, and the steeler animation make the action in this movie a treat to watch. The understanding that the main audience for the movie are dedicated fans helped it succeed.

I frankly can’t wait to see if there will be a sequel or if Nintendo will make movies for their other franchises. The Super Mario Bros. Movie was a financial success too making over 300 million dollars its opening week and making over 700 million in the first two weeks. In that short time, it became one of the biggest movies of 2023. 

Definitely give this new Mario movie a chance. It’s a lot of fun, doesn’t take itself too seriously and caters to fans- that’s five stars in my book. 

Rating: 5/5