Sunday, April 8, 2007

Super Mario Bros.: Peach Hime Kyushutsu Dai Sakusen

Super Mario Bros.: Peach Hime Kyushutsu Dai Sakusen; Animated fantastic comedy, Japan, 1986; D: Masami Hata, S: Toru Furuya, Yu Mizushima, Mami Yamase, Akiko Wada, Kikuchi Masami

One evening, as Mario was playing a Video game up until late at night, a shot of Princess Peach was shown on his screen. While running away from flying turtles, she jumped outside of the TV into the real world, and fell on Mario. He falls instantly in love with her, but Koopa, a giant reptile, also exits the TV and kidnaps the Princess. The next morning Luigi didn't believe Mario a word he said and they continued their business in a store as usual. But a strange dog showed up and lured them into a pipe, which led them to a strange world of Mushroom kingdom. An old man explains that the Princess is being held by Koopa, so the two of them decide to rescue her. On their long journey, together with the dog, they get captured by Koopa's henchmen but manage to get away, all the while Luigi is only interested in gold. With a help of a flying ship, they enter Koopa's castle, just as he was about to marry the Princess. Using his special powers; a star, a mushroom and a flower, at once, Mario was able to beat Koopa. The dog turned into prince Haru, Princess Peach' lover, while Mario and Luigi returned home with a lot of gold.

It's not hard to determine that the unknown, 60 minutes long anime film "Super Mario Bros.: The Great Mission of Saving Princess Peach" is the best (animated) achievement in which the heroes Mario and Luigi, from the popular Video game, ever appeared. The Japanese authors have a different style of thinking than the American ones, thus in this lost film they didn't offer anything that the Americans wouldn't either, but they made it with a lot more style, spirit and devotion, making their original Mario, Luigi and especially the unbelievably charming and cute Princess more "alive" than they were in the animated series "Super Mario Bros. Super Show", Super Mario World" and "Super Mario Bros. 3" (except in episodes "Kootie Pie Rocks", "7 Continents for 7 Koopas" and "Reign Storm" from the latter). The exposition is especially amusing, showing how Mario can't believe his eyes when a handsome Princess falls from his TV right into his arms, and when Koopa brings her back in, the title on the screen shows up, saying: "Game Over". One of the missteps the movie made was to become bizarre without limits in portraying the surreal world, and the greedy Luigi in this version seems to have came from a totally different film, but the story is full of funny and vital layers (when they hear they are going to get a reward if they save the Princess Mario and Luigi start cheerfully dancing but Mario suddenly stops because of sadness while Luigi continues; during their stay in prison Mario and the dog manage to escape through a tunnel while Luigi gets stuck thanks to his bag full of gold), temporarily without any serious competition among the Super Mario adaptations, and in the sequence in which the hero is sadly dreaming that he is dancing with the Princess, even a small dramatic touch can be found.


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