Let’s-A-Go See Mario


Mario has been jumping his way into household televisions and providing family fun for over 30 years, but how will he finally perform on Nintendo’s first big screen debut after all this time? Unfortunately, film adaptations of video games have always been notoriously terrible, and many have prayed for The Super Mario Bros. Movie to be spared from a similar fate. Understandably, fans have been highly skeptical about whether the film would adequately pay homage to the red and mustachioed legend since its reveal. In addition, the reveal trailer revealed concerning aspects of the animated feature, such as Chris Pratt’s seemingly poor portrayal of Mario and other strange voice-casting choices. 

Regardless, our fears have all been put to rest since its release on April 5th, 2023, because the film is not bad! Fans waited in long lines outside theaters, and many dressed as their favorite characters for the premiere. Once the credits rolled, the dimly lit auditorium erupted in cheers. For fans, the film is absolutely filled to the brim with references and callbacks to the older Mario titles, and for more casual viewers, it is an enjoyable experience. However, I and many others would not call the movie unforgettable and outstanding. Ben Naftali (2023) has been playing the Mario video games since 2007 and adores the series. Supposedly, when the first The Super Mario Bros. Movie trailer was released, Naftali got all giddy and ran about the house, making sure his parents saw the trailer and his excitement all afternoon long. However, he was disappointed in what he saw. 

“I really enjoyed what I saw, but I wouldn’t call [The Super Mario Bros. Movie] a good film. If you stripped out all the Mario references and graphical technology, you would be left with a very subpar and bare-bones film,” Naftali said. “The 3D graphics were stunning, and the Mario aspects were fun, but the story was severely lacking.” 

Even so, Naftali and many others agree that the film was enjoyable and well worth the time and wait, despite its flaws. The Super Mario Bros. Movie was Nintendo’s first foray into filmmaking. As its first step into the medium, Mario sheds light on a hopeful future where many of Nintendo’s beloved series may see a film debut.