Jessica Wolfgang ’25, Staff Writer

Number One Movie?

From the same studio that brought us Despicable Me, comes yet another hit: The Super Mario Bros. Movie. It was first released in theaters on April 5th, 2023, and continues to strike up hits within the box office. So far it has made $508.7 M worldwide and is on track to becoming the number one movie released in 2023. 

What is it about?

Honestly, I have not had time to watch it personally, however it is noted the movie generally focuses on the background story of Mario and his brother, Luigi. Luigi gets captured by Bowser and Mario gets introduced to a whole new world on a quest to save him. For fans who have played most, if not all, Mario games, the movie touches on the nostalgia of Mario going on an adventure to save someone, tackling enemies on his way. However, usually the person to save is Princess Peach, not his brother Luigi.


No Damsel in Distress Peach?

In most of the games, Princess Peach takes on the persona of damsel in distress. So, why doesn’t she fill the same role in the movie? In short, the directors decided to take a twist for the movie and make Luigi fill the damsel in distress role. 

Peach is not always the damsel in distress. In fact, Nintendo released a game relevant to the Mario series, called Super Princess Peach back in 2005. In this specific game, she took on the protagonist to ironically save Mario and other familiar characters such as Toad, Luigi, etc. She fought using four emotions: joy, gloom, rage, and calm (I would recommend this game; it is super interesting and fun!). To the same token, it also makes sense that they would give Luigi the damsel in distress role. Within the Mario series, there is a series for Luigi: Luigi’s Mansion. Here, we find that Luigi is the less courageous brother, constantly frightened and not so brave (ironically, this makes him my favorite of the brothers). 

Chris Prat as Mario? 

 Anyone who hears the word Mario I am sure pictures a little Italian man with various catchy lines. But, for the movie, they stripped him of his iconic accent and arguably, his charm. Most fans were irritated that they swapped Mario’s voice actor, Charles Martinet, with Chris Prat. In trailers, fans watched in horror as they listened to a normal, non-spunky man with absolutely no noticeable accent. Chris Prat defended himself in several interviews proving he could sound like the game version of Mario. He felt it would get annoying throughout the movie to hear the constant iconic Mario voice. Which is fair, I am quite sure it would. 

Star Touches: 

Contestably, one would say the pure and iconic gem of this movie is having Jack Black voice Bowser. The movie’s cast has many stars that one would recognize, among them being Jack Black. He is most noted for voicing a loveable but strong panda, Po, from the Kung Fu Panda movies. It is quite interesting how he could successfully voice both the friendliest character, as well as one of the most threatening and evil characters to strike the Mushroom Kingdom. However, according to many sources, he does a wonderful job, and just like Po, his interpretation of Bowser has touched the hearts of many. Specifically, how he made Bowser still as threatening as he is in the games, but also added the charm of the character having a huge crush on Peach, which of course he turned into a song. Once you hear it, it is impossible to get out of your head. Quite frankly, I smile whenever I hear a clip of it used. 

Moving Forward:         

Illumination, working with Nintendo, the makers of the iconic The Super Mario Bros. Movie has made another great movie for people of all ages, especially fans of the Super Mario universe to watch. I cannot wait to watch it, as I have heard many good things about the film thus far. I am interested in seeing if Nintendo continues the trend of making their iconic games into short enjoyable movies. So far, they have done Pokémon, Sonic, and Mario. It will be interesting to see them keep up the trend with other series such as Kirby, Star Fox, Pikmin, and especially with the Legend of Zelda series, where the protagonist Link never talks. I personally think Nintendo makes awesome games, and I hope they keep up the trend with just as enjoyable movies.