It’s-a Movie! A Mario Movie!

Are you ready to see the new Mario movie?

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Augie Manzano, Opinion Editor

January of 2018. A month that not only means a lot to me, being my birthmonth and all, but it was also the month I found out my favorite Italian plumber from Brooklyn would be getting his own movie.

Of course, I’m talking about Mario!

I was thirteen years old when I heard the news about Nintendo collaborating with Illumination, the animation studios who recently produced Minions: Rise of Gru – which was a huge hit for the box offices this year. I was so excited to hear that one of my favorite game characters was going to be on the big screen in the future.

Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months, and the months turned into a year. Over a year had passed, and news about the movie was as scarce as water in the Sahara. Many times throughout the news drought, I had forgotten that there was even a movie in the works. 

That was until over a year ago, when Nintendo hosted a livestream on YouTube that talked about important details of the new movie.

 The livestream went over a possible release date, how progress with the movie was going, and most importantly the cast. I couldn’t believe what my eyes were seeing, nor could I believe what my ears were hearing. Finally, after what felt like a decade of waiting, I was able to get my hands on new information and dream about how good this was going to be.

Shigeru Miyamoto, the creator of Super Mario Bros., had the floor of the livestream when he was presenting the news. The man who created the games that I played when I was a wee-kid, was telling me who would be voicing each and every character. To say he had my attention was not only true, but a massive understatement. 

The excitement going through my head was enough to keep a lightbulb lit. Mr. Miyamoto finally showed us who would be starring in the Mario movie, and I couldn’t believe my eyes… Chris Pratt as Mario! It was so unexpected I was laughing.

The livestream’s chat was going absolutely crazy. Everyone couldn’t believe what they were seeing, and neither could I. However, one thing came to my mind: Where’s Charles Martinet? Where is THE voice of Mario? Mr. Miyamoto followed up the Chris Pratt announcement by saying “he’s so cool!” Yes, he’s cool but there’s no way you can have a Mario movie without Mario’s voice! 

However, these worries of mine immediately went away as he then announced the other characters’ voice actors. It was announced that Mario’s little brother, Luigi, would be voiced by Charlie Day. “What a good pick” I thought. I didn’t know that Charlie Day was even an option, but I knew that he would be a good voice for the green-capped ghost-busting Mario brother. We also got news about who would be voicing the Princess of the Mushroom Kingdom, Anya Taylor-Joy will be voicing Princess Toadstool. To be honest, I didn’t know who Mrs. Joy was but I believed that she would play her new role well.

To top off the announcement, Mr. Miyamoto showcased one last voice actor for the movie: Jack Black. When I first saw that he would be the voice of the King of the Koopas, Bowser, I thought that maybe this wasn’t the best choice. Don’t get me wrong, Jack Black is a very cool guy with a good voice, but I don’t know if his playing Bowser would match. 

And that was that. The movie bit for the livestream was over and I was pretty satisfied with the news I got. The Mario Movie looked promising.

Fast forward to October 6th, 2022. Illumination releases the first teaser trailer for the Super Mario Bros. Movie. 

The first animated trailer which features our beloved Mario Bros. characters had arrived and I woke up that Thursday morning with a gleam in my eye and with my hopes high to see a glimpse into the cinematic Mario World. 

Within the first 10 seconds of the trailer, I was already in love with how it looked. The designs of the characters looked very detailed and polished, I couldn’t help but be relieved how good things were looking.

The voice acting as well was enough to take my breath away. Jack Black’s voice of Bowser was actually very well executed. My thoughts about Jack Black not being a good fit for Bowser were thrown out of the window in about two seconds after hearing one line of dialogue. The scenery looked amazing. The setting of the Mushroom Kingdom was breathtaking. Seeing all of the mushrooms off in the distance, the clouds with coin blocks in the sky, the warp pipes all around the place, it was surreal to say the least. 

And then, we see our hero, Mario. Mario’s design is actually very well done. I loved the attention to detail of his outfit; the shine of his buttons, the pocket being visible on his overalls, the stitches in his cap, everything was bleeding with detail and I was all for it.

However, it seems like everyone doesn’t like Chris Pratt’s voice for the red-capped plumber. People are saying that there’s no accent to his voice and that he shouldn’t be voicing Mario. Personally, I don’t think it’s the end of the world. His voice for Mario could be better, but for what we got and saw, I don’t think it’s that bad of a voice acting job. 

While others are worried about the voice of Mario, I couldn’t worry less. The movie’s cast and teaser trailer looks so promising that I don’t feel any reason to worry. 

With that said, I’m looking forward to the movie’s release and will be doing all I can to secure a seat for when it releases in theaters on April 7th of next year!