Review: ‘The Super Mario Bros. Movie’ delivers a fun, basic take on video game

Illumination honors Nintendo fans with satisfactory adaptation


Courtesy of Illumination.

Illumination released the highly anticipated animated The Super Mario Bros. Movie last Wednesday. Critics were left disappointed throughout the course of the film, but fans and families enjoyed the fun and safe approach to the video game.

The film follows two plumber brothers, Mario (Chris Pratt) and Luigi (Charlie Day), starting their new plumbing company together in Brooklyn, New York. This leads them to their discovery of a magical pipe that takes them to a new world, where they both get separated along the way. With the help of Princess Peach (Anya Taylor- Joy) and Toad (Keegan- Michael Key), Mario embarks on a journey in search of his brother. The storyline keeps audiences intrigued, but it could have been better and stretched out to feel more faithful to the games. 

The plot doesn’t try to convey too much, and it fits with its general audience of video game lovers. The story is fast-paced and its ending was fairly predictable, but it works by having enough time to close up the characters’ stories. The ending felt rushed with a lack of explanation toward what happens after the final act.

Characters had a righteous development and their designs matched perfectly with the game. The standout was Bowser played by Jack Black, who gives a solid performance unrecognizable from his past roles and behavior. The relationship between Mario and Luigi is the core of the movie, focusing on their bond as brothers. The Italian accent from Mario and Luigi was briefly used at the beginning and not touched on again, which was an odd decision, considering the characters are Italian in the games.

As for the voice acting, it was well done and the line deliveries were well thought out, however, there were times when the characters’ emotions did not match the delivery of the actors. The acting wasn’t as bad as people expected; it was a decent portrayal of the characters.

The animation was one of the best parts of the movie. The use of the music and sound effects from all the games added a nice touch as it went well for the scenes they were used in. Some song choices from the soundtrack were unnecessary.

Overall, “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” did not disappoint and delivers a nostalgic “Super Mario” adaptation for all ages and is recommended for families. There are numerous easter eggs and references from all the Mario games fans will come across throughout the film and find refreshing. The movie deserves a solid 9/10 as it has its minor flaws for anyone to enjoy.