28 May: Super Mario Bros – The First Videogame Movie

Before ‘Tomb Raider’, before ‘Mortal Kombat’, before ‘Street Fighter’, there was something even WORSE. ‘Super Mario Bros’ – which opened in the United States on 28th May, 1993 – was such a critical and commercial failure that for years afterwards Nintendo kept their franchises out of Hollywood hands.

Relocating the action to ‘Dinohattan’, the film inexplicably disregarded most of what had made the videogame such a smash-hit and replaced these elements with allusions to Blade Runner and Tim Burton’s Batman.

In this episode, Arion, Olly and Rebecca reveal Bob Hoskins’ drinking and accident-prone habits on-set, consider the relative strength of today’s spinoffs such as The Lego Movie, and analyse the secret sauce that keeps the Mario brand strong in the face of such adversity… 

Further Reading:

CinemaSins presents: ‘Everything Wrong with Super Mario Bros in 21 Minutes or Less’:

• ‘The Stench of it Stays With Everybody’, The Guardian (2018): 


• ‘Plumbing a Videogame To Its Depths’ – the New York Times reviews the film in 1993: