Review: The Super Mario Bros. Movie


“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” was released on Apr. 5 with a run time of one hour and thirty-two minutes.

Sadie House, Senior Reporter

“The Super Mario Bros. Movie,” released Apr. 5, 2023 and directed by Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic, brings the brightly colored nostalgia of the Mario franchise to the big screen for a fun-filled adventure audiences will find impossible not to enjoy. 

The film follows a straightforward plot, beginning with Bowser’s ominous take over of the Snow Kingdom, despite a valiant effort by the penguins. After destroying their castle with his signature fire breath, Bowser gets what he came for, the Super Star that will make him invincible as he takes over the world and gains Peach’s love.

The opening scene shifts to the human world, depicting Mario and Luigi’s tumultuous attempt at starting their plumbing business in Brooklyn after breaking away from their former employer. When Brooklyn begins to flood due to a certified plumbing disaster, the brothers take it upon themselves to save their city and venture into the depths of the sewers. It is not only a pungent stench awaiting them, but a portal to another universe through a pipe, sucking Mario and Luigi into a cosmic tunnel before they are abruptly separated. 

Mario arrives in the Mushroom Kingdom, where he soon meets Toad, his new, self-declared best friend. Toad tells Mario that Luigi arrived in land under Bowser’s control, and that he will likely not last long. Mario and Toad then team up with Princess Peach to save Luigi, already on her own mission to recruit the Kong Army in the war against Bowser’s advances.

Driven by the need to find his brother, and on a larger scale, to save the world from Bowser, Mario finds himself in a number of situations harkening back to the expansive catalog of Super Mario games. From tackling a basic course and brawling with Donkey Kong, to kart customization for an explosive race across Rainbow Road that leads Mario to saving the day. 

Having a simple plot allows “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” time to breathe and showcase what truly shines, the visuals and the score. In an interview for ScreenSlam, Director Michael Jelenic says, “Expect to see one of the most beautiful animated movies ever made with some of the best action set pieces that I’ve ever seen, and some of the funniest, most charming characters from a video game literally everybody loves.”

The various settings of the film are visually stunning, offering clear graphics, and vibrant color that practically pops out of the screen. No detail is left out, rendering the world of the Super Mario Bros. more alive than ever in this fast-paced adventure.

Endless references and easter eggs will be a treat for fans of any age, accompanied by amusing casting that carries the consistent humor of the film well. 

Another standout is the score, as Brian Tyler expertly reworks iconic Mario themes and melodies into epic orchestral fanfares. The incredible music only heightens the adrenaline that spans the runtime. 

Overall, “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” is well worth the watch, packed with nostalgia and timeless characters. It is simply pure fun and joy.