Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Flashback: The Mario Bros Movie

New "segment" I want to do which is called FLASHBACK: having a look at stuff from our

We all grew up with the awesome and, in many ways, delightfully camp films from the late eighties  and early nineties. They are cinematic classics. Films you know, like the Back to the Future trilogy,  the Indiana Jones trilogy - which was unfortunately and unforgettably molested recently - and the original Tim Burton Batman films. And some films which stood on their own like The Goonies, Beetlejuice and Ferris Bueller's Day Off among many others.

Combined within this, for us as a lucky generation, were those classic video games which started off the modern gaming identities held within PlayStation and Xbox and Wii. Games such as Pacman, Space Invaders, Donkey Kong and the all time favourite, Super Mario Brothers. None of which, upon reflection, make any sense concerning their stories, but were fun nonetheless.

After all that was said and done, there was a phase in cinema history which continues on to this day, and that is making films out of the games we love so much. Some of them are kind of okay, though none really come to mind right now, and some are just downright embarrassing. Most of them come to mind right now. But one film from my childhood, which in some ways seemed pretty great then, comes to mind right now. And that film is the critically despised, and generally disliked, Super Mario Bros film.

For those of you who haven't seen this film - I urge you, please, please do. It is truly one of the best achievements in 90s camp cinema. Notice in films like Back to the Future: Part II and Batman and Robin and many others, that there was a certain level of puppetry and bright neon colours and garbage involved in the scenes. If you've seen any of these 90s camp movies, you know what I mean. This film does it best. What's worse really, is that it uses some truly fantastic actors to capture it all. Actors who, probably, had significant damage done to their careers because of it.

This film, which boasts a whopping 3.8/10 on IMDB.com and an astounding 13% on RottenTomatoes.com, hosts John Leguizamo as Luigi, Samantha Mathis - yes, she was big news in the 90s - as Daisy (a princess), acting heavyweight Bob Hoskins as Mario and original Easy Rider Dennis Hopper as King Coopa. Yes. Seriously. Also, an animatronic Yoshi.
Rotten Tomatoes gives it the brief review of 

"[d]espite flashy sets and special effects, Super Mario Bros. is too light on story and substance to be anything more than a novelty".
That's more or less right, but it's also so much more. It is truly ridiculous.

Princess Daisy is a woman born from the dinosaur-ruled world of King Coopa - a parallel universe in which mankind evolved from the lizards instead of primates - and she is the only one who can save it from the evil king. Mario Mario and Luigi Mario - again, no, I'm not kidding - help her out while being plumbers, apparently bad ones at that. Meanwhile, the idiot lackeys of Coopa kidnap Mario's girlfriend Peach (a-ha) and so it turns out he must rescue her, too.

I'm not kidding. Seriously, see this movie. It is by far one of the funniest and most amusing films you will ever enjoy…with the gift of hindsight.


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