There was a time when movies based on video games tried to distance themselves from their source material. “This ain’t no game,” bragged the poster for the 1993’s live-action Super Mario Bros. film. Times have changed: The final trailer for The Super Mario Bros. Movie by Illumination leans hard into its origins. This is absolutely a game, it says. See? Here’s a scene that looks like New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe, and another one that looks just like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.
If you were hoping to hear more of Chris Pratt’s Mario voice, you won’t find much new here — but the final trailer does give viewers a clear look at the tone the movie is going for. We watch Bowser list off an army of familiar video game enemies. We watch Mario and Donkey Kong use power mushrooms and fire flowers as they run through a training course that looks like a traditional Mario level. We see Mario and Peach race through a brightly rendered Rainbow Road. It looks familiar. It looks fun. And it looks like a game, but with better graphics.
That’s no surprise. According to directors Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic, Illumination has worked closely with Nintendo to make sure the film feels right. The directors also say that Illumination has improved its lighting and rendering technology to help push Super Mario Bros. Movie to the next level “beyond anything Illumination has ever done.”
As for that Mario voice? You’ll finally be able to hear the full performance when the film hits theaters next month. The Super Mario Bros. Movie releases on April 5, 2023.