The Super Mario Movie: As good as expected?


Taken from Trusted reviews

Dimitri N (Year 11)

During the holidays, a group of my friends and I decided to go watch the Super Mario Movie. As a big fan of the video game series, I was quite excited about the movie but came in with very low expectations. And now, having watched the movie, I can easily say that it met all of them. I personally loved it and thought it was a lot of fun – a great kids’ movie. While I say that, I can easily see that the Mario Movie was clearly catered to someone like me and could very easily be a dull, or even confusing movie to some.  

Before I go any further into the article, I should firstly give a mild spoiler warning. I don’t intend to spoil the plot of the movie, but I can’t write this article without giving some things away. 

Firstly, I want to acknowledge who this movie caters to because, in all honesty, it is a specific audience. If you are looking for a fun kids’ movie that isn’t too complex or deep, then this is the movie for you. However, if you are looking for a movie that is a bit deeper or one with a complex plot, then you should look elsewhere. The other group of people who will absolutely love this are the big Nintendo or Mario fans. There are so many easter eggs and references within this movie. It’s a soundtrack that any long-time Nintendo fan will be constantly excited for. I know I was constantly nudging my friends and pointing out the references.  

Now onto the actual movie. The plot, as I mentioned earlier was very basic and did not have much emotional or thematic substance. In saying that, I am a firm believer that a movie doesn’t need to be deep or emotional to be good and what the Mario Movie lacked in plot, it more than made up for in its bright and immersive animation which, for Illumination standards, was excellent. Was it a stunning visual experience like ‘Into the Spider Verse’ or ‘Puss in Boots 2?” No. But it held up quite well in its own style. I was very scared when I heard that the Mario Movie was being made by Illumination, given the company’s less than perfect track record, so I was pleasantly surprised to see that this movie looked quite good. 

The real carrier of this movie though, was the cast. Despite a series of excitement and scares revolving around the all-star cast of this movie and their potential accents, the voice acting in this movie was overall great. The titular character of Mario, played by Chris Pratt was, in my opinion, the weakest link and even he had a relatively impressive performance. Other characters such as Seth Rogan’s Donkey Kong, Anya Taylor Joy’s Princess Peach and Kegan Michael Key’s Toad were great and did just what they needed to do. Somehow the voice of Toad even managed to evade becoming extremely annoying. But in truth, the real standout characters were, Charlie Day’s Luigi, who despite his lacking screen time, had an excellent performance. And of course, Jack Black playing Bowser, his performance made the movie for me, as it was so full of that natural Jack Black rockstar energy that fit so well with his character.  

And of course, if I am to talk about Jack Black playing Bowser, I have to talk about the ‘viral’ song “Peaches” which was a creation of Jack Black and another songwriter for the Mario Movie. The song is the perfect blend of appropriate and hilarious that Jack Black has done so many times before. However, “Peaches” was only the cap of an already excellent soundtrack filled with references to the games, including a surprise appearance of the ‘DK Rap’. The only downside of the Mario Movie’s music was the use of 80’s music mixed throughout the movie. I felt that they were an unnecessary addition and that they served no good purpose in the movie, despite being good songs in their own right. 

Anyway, to finish this review off, I want to strongly recommend The Super Mario Movie to anyone looking for a fun kids movie that they can put on for some easy family enjoyment or to any existing fans of Nintendo or the Mario franchise. If you haven’t watched this movie and you meet any of those two things, go watch it. Overall, the Super Mario Movie was a lot of fun and in general a good time for everyone.  

3.5 mushrooms/5