The Super Mario Bros. Movie

Super Mario Bros. movie cover

Illumination & Nintendo

Super Mario Bros. movie cover

Tymber Sandvig, Staff Writer


The Super Mario Bros. movie is a new animated film from Illumination and Nintendo. Released on April 5th, the Super Mario Bros-based movie brings a nostalgic take on everyone’s beloved childhood video game.


Opening with a nod to a Nintendo game, the first scene portrays Bowser’s invasion into the Ice Kingdom. Bowser, played by Jack Black quickly reveals his hidden purpose other than expanding his rule; in the Ice Kingdom, Bowser gains control of the all-powerful star. Bowser is the “secret spice” of the movie and Jack Black was the perfect choice for this character. He skillfully manipulates his voice to portray the deep and bellowing vocals that match the sinister character. “Peaches,” is an emotional power ballad that describes the unrequited love Bowser holds for Princess Peach.  “Peaches” racked up 5.8 million U.S. streams and 6,000 downloads in its first week, landing at No. 83 on the Billboard Hot 100, the song could be considered for an Oscar. 


Mario, played by Chris Pratt, and Luigi, played by Charlie Day are Italian-American plumbers in Brooklyn. After being discouraged by the people in his life, Mario discovers his call to action when a flood is caused by a break in a water pressure valve. Being blown through a wall, they discover a tunnel that sucks them into an unknown place; but at least they have each other! Or do they? Separated from each other, Mario, who is in the Mushroom Kingdom, shortly meets Toad, played by Keegan-Michael Key. Toad tells Mario that Luigi is in the Dark Lands, aka the lands under Bowser’s control. Throughout the movie Chris Pratt’s horribly cheesy Italian accent continuously falters. While some say it adds a comical element to the movie, I say they could have chosen a better actor for the role.  While Charlie Day’s voice for the role of Luigi wasn’t necessarily Italian it suited the character beautifully. 


Toad is a refreshing take on the characters we see in the video games. While the other toads in the Mushroom Kingdom fled from danger, he wanted to stand beside his queen and fight for their freedom. Toad’s voice is very fitting, and I hold extreme respect for Key on the way he manipulates his voice for this role. While we are introduced to Toad’s character in the Mushroom Kingdom, Toad takes Mario to Princess Peach in order to gain her help in getting Luigi back from the Dark Lands. 


Entering the castle without permission, the princess is in an important military meeting to save the kingdom from Bowser. Meeting the princess, Mario convinces her to let him come along the journey by almost completing an obstacle course. After a few pitiful but trying attempts, Mario achieved his objective when Peach agreed to let him go anyways. Peach is played by Anja Taylor-Joy; her character is fierce and independent. I enjoyed the casting for her role, the voice suited the character well and she did a good job matching tone to the scene, however, there were some points where I wanted to see a more light hearted side of Peach.  


I really enjoyed this movie and where they took it, I think it did a good job of keeping the journey going. They portrayed the rise of Mario and Luigi well and the characters’ personalities were very fitting. The demographic for this movie is primarily children, but in the theater you could hear giggles from young and old. It could never hurt for adults to watch this movie at least once to get nostalgia from seeing one of their childhood video games in action