As our household is a household of Nintendo lovers, we went out to see The Super Mario Bros Movie.
Okay. Here’s my basic summary. The movie isn’t high art but it is clearly a love letter to the Mario franchise by people who deeply love the Mario franchise. It isn’t a deconstruction of the idea of Mario but a reconstruction of the games in a movie medium. Our entire family enjoyed the movie but it was aimed right at us.
I’m not going to spoil the plot, other than a couple remarks, but there are no surprises. You can see the plot points coming a mile away. But what I did like is that the script leans into the story beats.
Okay, this is a spoiler. This version of the brothers are from Brooklyn (not all of them are) but they aren’t pulled through a random pipe into the other world. No, they get pulled in while trying to stop a major civil engineering disaster. Mario leaped for the call before he knew it was there. He is never portrayed as a reluctant hero, just a novice one.
Peach is arguably the most redefined character as a lady of war (and it can be argued since Peach has been a badass in many versions of the character, dating back to the American Siper Mario Bros 2) but we loved her. She is the Batman to Mario’s Spider-Man. Mario won’t stop. Peach cannot be stopped. Even in her darkest moment, she comes out swinging.
(Okay, Lumalee is the most redefined character, as well as the inevitable dark horse darling of the film. It’s like they were thrown in to give even people who hate everything else something to love)
I won’t bore you with other points I liked about the film (thank you very f you’ve read this far) The visuals are a treat. Jack Black is a hoot as Bowser. Luigi could have used more character development.
But the Super Mario Bros Movie succeeds at what it’s trying to do by celebrating its source material.
(I still fear my dream of a feature length Legend of Zelda movie where the Hero of Time Link uses the Ocarina of Time to open a time warp that lets Breath of the Wild Zelda team up up Sheik and Tetra (plus Miidna for snark) to save the universe in a cross time caper will be never come to be)