Contrary to Critics’ Reviews, The Super Mario Bros. Movie Simply Good


Asher Zumwalt, Staff Writer

It’s not uncommon for us to see a large gap between what ‘critics’ think of movies and what normal people think. This is seen true in the case of The Super Mario Bros. Movie. On Rotten Tomatoes, critics ended up giving 57% approval, compared to the gen pop approval of 96%. So what’s going on here? There’s a few things to consider here.

I’m obligated to say that I personally thoroughly enjoyed the movie. I was sitting there with a stupid grin on my face as I told my brother where all of the little references were from. But that doesn’t make my review of the movie any less valid. Critics are just regular people. They do not have a sophisticated pallet unfathomable by the common folk. Their preferences and opinions have no greater importance than anyone else.

What is worth noting however, is that these are movie critics. The point being, there’s a solid chance a lot of these people have had little connection with the Mario franchise. The more you have played Mario games, the more enjoyable the film is. It really is that simple. Film critics may be missing many of the nuances and references that made this movie so special. Mario is one of the most iconic characters in the world, and not only helped push video games into the place in entertainment that they have reached, but also has produced some of the best video games that one can play.

The Mario franchise is more than just a character made for kids’ games being paraded into slightly different contexts to appease an audience of unaware children. These games are incredible. Not to mention, not only for kids. Mario 64, Mario Sunshine, Mario 3, these games are hard. I mean, look at the original arcade game, or even any of the NES titles, many can attest to playing them a bit, but completing them, these games are brutal. These certainly are not just titles for kids.

Now these games have been used upon with the difficulty, but they have not lacked the prowess that holds themselves so high in the video game community. Watching the Mario movie and seeing all of my favorite games and characters in one place is what made this movie so entertaining. I wasn’t going in expecting a sophisticated kids movie with an Inside Out level plot, I was expecting a good time, and that is what was given.

As a Mario fan, this was an enjoyable experience not only because of the film itself, but also because Mario fans are always impatient as they wait for new games. Mario fans have received little lately, with Super Mario Odyssey in 2017, and the brief Bowser’s Fury in 2021. With the mammoth expectations that these two games set for Mario in the present, it will likely be some time before the next game. The Mario movie also serves to tithe over the starving Mario fans as the wait for yet another adventure of the platforming plumber.

The movie itself is fun. It’s not amazing or a breakthrough in children’s animation, but it is a good time. Jack Black as Bowser is not only hilarious, but he also was the perfect cast for how Bowser was portrayed in this movie-as a love blinded villain. It’s hilarious, his affection for Princess Peach is silly and laughable, and also further promotes the strength of Princess Peach as a character. In the movie she is not a sit and wait to be saved princess, she was already on here way to stop Bowser when Mario shows up, she is strong and takes her pink, feminine, style and wears it as comfortably as a part of her character as she does her tiara.

A review of the Mario movie is simply incomplete coming from anyone who has not finished or at least put some time into the games that make Mario so great. Many people have at least played Mariokart or New Super Mario Bros Wii. But there’s more to Mario, and to claim to make a ‘critical’ review and take the moral high ground over ‘loyalist fans’ isn’t fair when haven’t experienced the video games that backup this video game movie.