The Super Mario Bros. Movie early review roundup

Early reviews for The Super Mario Bros. Movie have mostly been glowing – although the film's humour hasn't hit with everyone.
super mario bros movie review roundup

The Super Mario Bros. Movie has premiered to a largely positive reception, with early reviewers and critics praising the film’s fun and liveliness on social media. It’s been described as a love letter to Nintendo fans, and has so far received high praise for its dedication to the Super Mario source material, and its many delightful easter eggs – although judgement on the film’s plot and humour has been relatively harsher.

While many agree that the film is wildly charming, and features some fantastic performances, particularly from Jack Black (Bowser) and Charlie Day (Luigi), dissenting voices have called it ‘goofy’ and labelled jokes in the film ‘bad’.

Edmond Tran of GamesHub said: ‘There’s definitely an inkling of something interesting in the broader narrative and ideas of The Super Mario Bros. Movie, but the film clearly doesn’t feel like it needs to touch it, at least not yet.’ Elaborating on the plot, he said ‘They’re more like a series of contrivances to very, very quickly usher us into one colourful set piece after another,’ and ‘it doesn’t need any other reason to keep you there, because it knows what you came to get – a little Mario magic, a little nostalgia.’

Germain Lussier of Gizmodo said: ‘I really wanted to like it but I did not. A few solid scenes capture the spirit of the game but mostly it’s an overly goofy, bare-bones plot, filled w/ bad jokes & worse song choices. It looks great but I was more bored & annoyed than entertained.’

André Segers of GameXplain was slightly more positive, but still somewhat critical of the game’s shallow narrative: ‘The Super Mario Bros movie is an utterly delightful thrill ride that is as joyful as it is magical,’ Segers said. ‘It’s a movie that is for Mario fans first, and despite a somewhat shallow narrative, is a blast.’

Read: The Super Mario Bros. Movie Review

For many reviewers, the game’s narrative was not a particular bugbear – as it seems the thrill of adventure, and the imagination of the film’s design is enough to elevate The Super Mario Bros. Movie to exciting heights. Many agree that the adaptation has more than justified its own existence with a fresh and delightful take on the world of Super Mario.

Kit & Krysta, the former of hosts of Nintendo Minute, claimed they loved the film and called it ‘incredible’. ‘[It was] such a love letter to whole decades and decades of Mario. This is a movie that you’re going to want to see a lot of times,’ Kit said.

Tessa Smith of Mama’s Geeky agreed that it was a ‘love letter’ to Nintendo fans, calling out the film’s inclusion of easter eggs, and dedication to Mario lore.

While early impressions generally tend towards positivity, as select audiences are usually invited to premieres and preview events, it appears The Super Mario Bros. Movie will be a worthy ride, particularly for Nintendo fans. The game’s plot being described as shallow by multiple critics may cause some reason for concern, but with enough charm and easter eggs, it should overcome this criticism for the majority of keen audiences.

Read: The Super Mario Bros. Movie – Is there a post-credits scene?

The Super Mario Bros. Movie launches in Australian cinemas on 6 April 2023, on 7 April 2023 in the United Kingdom, and on 5 April 2023 in the United States.

The Super Mario Bros. Movie
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05/15/2024 10:16 pm GMT

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.