BY THOMAS WOOD
Just last week as of writing this, Nintendo did the unthinkable. In collaboration with Illumination, the studio behind Despicable Me, Nintendo actually released a fully animated Super Mario movie. In the wake of the Italian’s recent success, ranging from his usual video games to more recent foodstuffs, Nintendo decided to take the plunge. Here’s the kicker: the movie is fantastic.
The general critic consensus is that the movie is alright at best. On Rotten Tomatoes it sits at a meager 56%—not ideal. However, examining the reviews closer reveals the audience’s reception to the film: a staggering 96% approval rating. Let’s take a deep-dive into why exactly the review scores differ so much. While we’re at it, I’ll share my opinions on the film.
First and foremost, the Super Mario Bros. Movie is a love letter to long-term fans of the series. It calls back to obscure references from Mario’s origin in 1981 all the way to the present. Many critics straight-up admit that they don’t get it. Jeff Mitchell has this to say about his review: “’The Super Mario Bros. Movie’ is super-nostalgic but not super-fun. Granted, I haven’t regularly played home video games since NBA Jam, circa 1995.” Although many reviewers are understanding the nostalgic value of the movie through their brief experiences with Mario back in the day, they don’t understand the nuance that the movie provides when it comes to current day Mario, which would understandably confuse someone who isn’t an avid fan.
So did I enjoy the movie? Absolutely. From beginning to end, the Super Mario Bros. Movie was an active love letter to anyone who’s ever played a Mario game. Not only that, but the movie referenced several media outside of just Mario, including franchises like Punch Out and Duck Hunt. Along with this, movie critics tend to be cynic adults with nothing better to do with their time. At the end of the day, the movie is for avid fans and children, and clearly these movie critics don’t match the criteria. If you’re entering the Mario movie expecting to see nuanced character development, thrilling plot-twists, or Nicholas Cage, you will leave the theater extremely disappointed. But if you enter the film expecting to have your Mario knowledge rewarded, you will absolutely come out happy.
Categories: Entertainment, Opinion
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