Super Mario Bros. (1993)
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Secondly, why would anyone in their right mind take this kind of movie seriously, to the point of bashing it for things like "being to fake" and "not sticking to the Mario bro's storyline." People, in the games all Mario did was jump around, bop things on the head, throw fireballs around, and fly. If they would have made movies about that people would be asleep before the first 5 minutes. This movie was meant to entertain and captivate, and it certainly does the trick.
They took the classic game and adapted it to a fantasy reality that parallels our own and for that, it was simply brilliant. The rendition of koopa-manhattan was great and is not something that people should criticize. The city adds life the the movie, it makes it real in it's own fantastic way. It makes the city so crazy it works. And boy oh boy did those goomba's make me laugh.
I love this movie for everything it relates to the game and everything it added to make it a more fun-filled ride. If you love the games and have an open minded imagination, this is a must watch movie
Mario & Luigi (Bob Hoskins & John Leguizamo) are the two down on their luck brother plumbers who get involved with a college student named Daisy (Samantha Mathis) who turns out to be a princess from an alternate dimension. Once transported there themselves, they must fight the evil King Koopa (Dennis Hopper) and save their world from being merged with Koopa's and the human race from being turned into monkeys.
It may be hard to believe that John Leguizamo is Bob Hoskins brother, but the two have good chemistry and John has a convincing Brooklyn accent (although Tom Selleck would have been a more convincing Luigi in some respects). Bob reprises his gruff detective persona from "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" to great effect. Samantha Mathis is cute as the princess and manages to feel less shallow than most heroines in these situations. Dennis Hopper hams it up as the film's villain. Lots of gags and good natured humor, and a beautiful song from Roxette, "Almost Unreal". Worth a rental.
Rocky Morton and Annabelle Jankel's Dinohattan doesn't stray too far from dystopias like Blade Runner (in fact, production designer David L. Snyder worked on both films), but there's something infectious about seeing filmmakers allowed to reinvent source material with such wild abandon. The Goombas are no longer mushrooms but gigantic lizard men decked out in burgundy war regalia. Snyder embraces the industrial look of the film's real-life shooting locale with metal walkways, dangling power cords, and neon lighting curling around gray concrete pillars. Even the Koopahari desert is filled with strange, anonymous men in hazmat-style suits driving "sludge tankers" filled with garbage bags. All of these settings are also draped in the fungus, a string-cheese-like substance that occasionally offers power-ups to the heroes, including the iconic Bob-omb. A fun score by Alan Silvestri adds another layer of cohesion. The Super Mario Bros. movie is a good adaptation of the video game, it has a darker grittier slant than the game which.works better, good movie, it's certainly a memorable one, an ambitious failure that's far more inventive and interesting than 10 more faithful failed video game adaptation.
It is self-evident that there is a lack of imagination, especially recently, in the kids film genre, and this is where Super Mario Brothers earns the 7 out of 10 that I have given it. My film collection would be much less exciting without having watched this film as a child. This is why I urge those of you who have given it a poor rating to re-evaluate, considering what I have said.
First off, Super Mario Bros. (the game) takes place in the Mushroom Kingdom, a happy place that has been taken over by King Koopa (aka Bowser) and its people forced to mindlessly obey his will. Mario has to, of course, defeat Bowser to bring peace back to the Mushroom Kingdom. We all know that. The game DID NOT have cars, skyscrapers, or any obvious technology we enjoy today. Mario was a natural high jumper, and he worked alone.
The movie, however, is just a lame action movie with a few Mario allusions thrown in to attract Nintendo fans. The Mario allusion consist solely of: Mario, Luigi, and Daisy's names, enemy names, and a bomb-omb. Yay. Oh, and Yoshi, in a 5-second cameo as a dinosaur too small to even consider riding on. But Mario can't jump, no, he's a Brooklyn plumber with a Columbian brother! (How'd that happen?). Their personalities aren't even right. In the games, Mario is a determined hero with a heart of gold, willing to do anything to save the day. Luigi is his shy brother, who helps Mario in any way he can, but in a minimal sort of way. In the movie, they act more like best friends than brothers, Mario is annoyed by everything, and Luigi has a temper.
If you like plots quickly written up on napkins before the check comes, and complete destruction of all that Mario stands for, then see this movie. If you are under the age of 12 and have never played a Mario game in your life, then proceed with caution. If you have EVER played a Mario game in your life, take all measures NOT to see this movie. Remember, you cannot sue if this movie totally makes you cry uncontrollably for many hours, trust me, I've tried.
It's like one of these marvel movies that have been coming out recently: it's kind of cross between an "adult's" take and a "children's" take on a popular character. (Some other reviewer, or the trivia? had mentioned it) It's right in the middle. And the writing is great. Each scene flows logically to the next, and there's not much that's superfluous. Again it's got the fun of a children's movie mixed with the subtlety of an "adult's" movie.
My greatest concern is why the Brooklyn girls aren't freaking out that they're in a parallel dimension. Sure when they find out Daisy is a princess they freak out, but not about the fact that they're in a PARALLEL DIMENSION.
I mean if you really pay attention to the movie and get into it, just the visual aspects of this dystopian universe are worth it. You got smoke and sparks and wires and stretchy goo, people fighting, cars flipping, sheer madness. You've got the goofball pair of bad guys. You got dancing. You've got a romance between Luigi and Daisy that movies 3x as fast as Romeo and Juliet. You've got Mario knowing everything there is to know about pipes, including when to sled down them on a raft. You've got Yoshi, and at first you're disappointed, but then he turns out to be really cool.
Did I mention King Koopa shooting flames out of a suspended bucket of coal? (Think Bowser in Super Mario World, and pay attention).
A lot of people come away from the movie saying "that was not a Mario movie," and can't come up with reasons why, except that it wasn't like the video game. I mean, crap; YOU try to write a script for Mario and make it compelling. Honestly there's not a lot to work with! Think about it. You got a guy and a kidnapped princess and an evil monster. Go write! But as much as the making of this of this film apparently sucked, I think they did a great job with what materials they had. tl;dr This movie is fun and actually clever, and I hope you watch it with an open mind!
The View:Performances aren't the major thing here, but the special effects and creations are to be noticed more. The movie itself isn't bad and as a comedy, will have a few(just a few)giggles. It's all really just a fun fantasy movie that just doesn't shine through and doesn't make any effort to make an historical movie, but the film is fun and you will enjoy it as a complete no-brainer. ***
So how can I review this film so highly, despite the main star's objections to the quality of it? The truth of the matter is that this film isn't as terrible as the hype states it is. Being the first Hollywood adaption of a video game series, and being different from it's source material, there wasn't really anything to compare it to. If you were hoping for a genuine conversion of the game's storyline into a movie, then you are going to be highly disappointed - but then you've made a rather rash assumption that the basic story of the game series would work as a film to begin with. Movies need to be like epic events, a major moment of the character's lives cataloged within an hour and a half (minimum). The game's theme of 'Bowser has the Princess, run into castle and have toad say "Your Princess is in another castle" 7 or 8 times before the end' doesn't make for a good film.
Excuses aside, the film does succeed in the way it intends to. It is extremely fun. Unlike other films with it's reputation, the Super Mario Bros Movie is genuinely enjoyable and even more so thanks to the few downfalls in it's script. Bob Hoskins cracks me up as Mario "Get Your Belt on Kid! We're going' in!", and Dennis Hopper is clearly the inspiration for Doctor Evil from Austin Powers "See you later, Alligator". The movie manages to do something few films manage - it improves with age. I'm not going to state that it's as superb as Blade Runner (As stated on the box), because they're from two very different worlds. Blade Runner is a classic in terms of being a thought-provoking high-caliber sci-fi drama, Super Mario is a classic in terms of being a cheesy fun-fueled thrill-ride. The only reason these two were compared in the first place was the similarity of a run-down ugly futuristic city, both of which were furnished with surprisingly high quality set design and standards. I would love to see a full Blu-Ray restoration of this movie because there is so much intricate work done on the backgrounds and in the details that the additional quality Blu-Ray affords would allow us even more joy. There are some good jokes in here, the pace is good and never slacks, and while there are some bad script- writing problems the enjoyment should allow most people to gloss over those issues without much problem (Look at Star Trek 2009, horrific script, plot holes and some truly terrible Hollywood writing but because it was so fun and full of action, it is hailed as a great film). This makes it more closely related to being the Star Trek 09 movie of its day, with special effects that were (at the time) really impressive and a mixture of family humor and more adult action (Bob Hoskins sticking his face in a black woman's chest - golden).
I would love to see a restored Blu-Ray of this movie, as it is a great fun movie. It is more fun than many more recent video game based movies (The Resident Evil series is stale, the Degeneration movie was miss-able, the Final Fantasy films were badly directed, they even got it wrong with Yakuza: Like A Dragon...), most are bland (Something nobody could say about Super Mario Bros, whether they like it or not) or outright horrific, especially if made by Uwe Boll. Super Mario Bros is not the best movie ever made, but it never intended to be. It wasn't supposed to be a movie epic like Blade Runner or 2001: A Space Odyssey, nor was it supposed to be a direct translation of the game, which in itself would have been far worse and less enjoyable. It was intended to stand on its own two feet as a fun, family-oriented action movie with darker sci-fi undertones and while it never accomplishes them to perfection, it certainly succeeded well enough to continuously provide a fun and entertaining movie experience.
Some ideas are quite cool, others are a little childish, but that tends to come with the territory with family-friendly Hollywood movies. Again, now more than ever, Nintendo are family-oriented and their Wii console is centered around allowed the kids in as much as the teens and adults - another sign of this film being more accurate now than it was even at the time of its release.
As for possible Blu-Ray extras, I would adore an audio commentary by Bob Hoskins with him just hating on the film. You can imagine that would be a funny commentary. The Raw Deal Blu-Ray has an HD extra of a movie critic slating the movie. He-man DVDs have fan-commentaries ragging on the quality of the episodes while still speaking fondly of the series they adore. If the extras on these don't harm the sales, then the same thing for Super Mario Bros would only raise the sales of this film as people would be keen to hear what he has to say since his outbursts on the movie in the media. Other extras can include original script outlines and differences, several deleted scenes and the possibility of a re-cut.
I hope to see a decent Blu-Ray release of this movie soon. They've got Blu-Ray releases of Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat and other video game movies of the era, Super Mario deserves at least the same.
However, when one has to look at this movie with a fair and unbiased view, one has to come to the conclusion that this movie is good decent entertainment. No, it's not a GREAT movie but it does serve its purpose and that is to provide the viewer with 104 minutes of mindless, simple entertainment.
Kids will most likely like this movie best. The story is wonderfully adventurous and it all is very childishly simple constructed. I mean, the story and setting all basically have very little to do with the games but when you just have to judge the story, it's a pretty good and well thought out one. If the main characters were, let's say, some average Manhattan plumbers named the William's brothers and the entire movie wasn't based on a series of video games, than perhaps the movie would had received a far better reception and would had entertained and reached a wider audience.
All of the characters are pretty entertaining and work out well in the movie. This is probably mainly due to the well known cast. Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo are the Mario brothers and they form a pretty good main duo. Dennis Hopper also is in his element as the ruthless, over-the-top, stereotyped villain King Koopa. He gives the movie a certain extra fun and flair. Other well known actors in the movie are Fiona Shaw, Gianni Russo (Carlo Rizzi from the first two The Godfather movies) and Lance Henriksen in a very small cameo role.
Unlike the games, the movie is a dark one. All of the sets are dark which was perhaps not the greatest atmospheric mood for the story and the entire movie in general. All of the sets are disappointing, small and unimaginative looking. Same goes for the costumes and most of the make-up effects. The movie however has some good and convincing looking early special effects. Remember folks, that it was 1993 when this movie was released.
The movie however is most of the time a bit too childishly told and the dialogs are below par and too simple.
The pace and editing is good but the movie severely lacks some action and real interesting moments. At moments it takes too long before something good or interesting happens again, which makes this movie perhaps a bit boring and uninteresting to watch at certain points.
All in all it's a not very successful- but still yet entertaining first attempt at making a movie based on a video game. Certainly better than some of those movies based on video games, released this present day!
It did had character development, everything was explained really well,it didn't had plot holes and the special effects and the creatures looked pretty good!
As for the accuracy of the games, it is present in this movie, and it is very subtle, except for the Bob-omb scene, the Koopa Troopas are manly those spiked police men, the Goombas are De-evolved humanoid dinosaurs, and they resemble the original goombas by wearing manly brown, having sharp teeth and being stupid, as for the power-ups, the traditional Mushroom that makes Mario grow, is shown here as an sort of shield, which makes sense, since that when you get the mushroom in the games, you can take an extra hit before dying, so that works as an shield, the fireballs are actually flame-throwers, and my favorite part, the Twomp-Stompers, which are boots that make people jump higher and it's really good, too bad people overlook this and simply bash this film for not being accurate to the games, but no one flipped when the Jackson's Lord of the Rings came and it was almost nothing like the books, right?
When it comes to judge films, you have to pay attention to 1:character development, that's what makes people feel for characters, 2: a good story, and yes, dinosaurs that evolved into humanoid creatures is a pretty interesting theme, along with the alternate dimension thing. Some people have recognized the film's merits and it gained a cult following manly at the Super Mario Bros. Movie Archive.
Bottom line, it is a really good movie on it's on, watch it with an open mind, and don't be a Nostalgia Critic/8-12 year boy and simply enjoy this film by what it is and not what it should be.
Trust The Fungus.
Now, when I first heard about this movie, I thought it was going to be about as epic as I would ever see.
I was wrong.
It was like taking Mickey Mouse and Scooby Doo and having real people 'act' like them. And then added a retarded script. And then using terrible CG. And then having bad acting.
This movie sucked. I didn't want to say it, but it did. You don't take a video game and make the movie worse. You either make the movie WANT to make you play mario, or you don't make the movie at all. Really.
I rate 1/10 because they at least tried.
See now, how hard was that? The game *itself* has pretty much everything you need to make a movie about it... sure, you'd need some witty dialogue and an awful lot of special effects, but it's nothing that, say, *43 MILLION DOLLARS* couldn't do.
What you *don't* need are spurious and inane spring-loaded-rocket-jumping shoes, unnecessary connections to *wildly inaccurate* representations of evolutionary theory, awkward attempts to smoosh poor representations of unimportant baddies from every game into an hour and a half, or Dennis Hopper. They can jump high because it's a parallel universe, goombas are just creatures that evolved from whatever other creatures there were millions of years ago in that universe, and King Koopa is giant, spiky-shelled thing that looks *absofreakinglutely nothing* like Dennis Hopper. No, a spiky blond dye job on your head does not make you look like an evil reptilian tyrant - and it doesn't take the place of a shell.
Sadly, the Super Mario Bros. Movie makes the same mistake that virtually every other video-game movie has made: it flagrantly and arbitrarily makes stuff up that not only doesn't have *anything* to do with the game, but furthermore seems to perversely go so far off-course from the fun and adventurous tone of its source material as to make my childhood memories grit their teeth and softly weep.