Hot Takes are student-written reviews of relevant books (especially books in the library of the Bible), movies, shows, events, technology, and anything interesting or important to students (13-17 years of age). Usually light-hearted, each piece is all about developing a Biblical worldview, increasing Biblical literacy, and supplementing student ministries.

“Plumbers, Princesses, and Power-ups, a-WAHA!”

Mario and Luigi are brought to life in this colorful and charming pixelated universe, but is there more to this dynamic duo than smashing blocks and crushing koopas? If you’re game, buckle up and let’s-a go!

Look out: this Hot Take contains the blue shell of spoilers!

Featuring the voice talents of Chris Pratt (Mario), Jack Black (Bowser), and Anya Taylor-Joy (Princess Peach), Nintendo’s iconic Super Brothers’ huge box office results have already mushroomed beyond a billion dollars world wide.

The start screen opens up on two hardworking brothers facing a doubting former boss and disapproving parents and family, following the brothers bold decision to set out and start their own plumbing business.

But when a water main leak in the city presents an opportunity for heroics, the brothers leap into action only to get sucked down the drain into a pipe that separates and scatters them across a strange new world.

While Mario lands in the vibrant Mushroom Kingdom, ruled by Princess Peach, Luigi (voiced by Charlie Day) ends up in the Dark Lands, home to the infamous King Bowser, a villainous reptile set on marrying Princess Peach and destroying her Kingdom if she refuses.

But even though Bowser is powered by a Super Star, nothing will stop or slow down Mario from rescuing his brother and saving the Mushroom Kingdom. Unlocking this kind of courage and love is nothing new for any Christ-follower.

John, the bravest disciple and only one of the original twelve to stay with Jesus throughout His cruxifixion and death, is also known as the disciple “Jesus loved.”(John 13:23)

Maybe this is why John feels invincible and eager to share Jesus’ teaching,
“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” -John 15:13

And when Mario teams up with brave Peach and loyal Toad (voiced by Keegan-Michael Key), embarking on a journey to the Jungle Kingdom, we see this verse get a 1-UP and come alive.

We also are treated to a lightning bolt of a performance from Bowser in a love ballad for the ages, not to mention one of the top trendy viral performances inspired by this masterful melody.

Still, keep your fire flowers handy, as not everything in this film is fun and games, especially when our heroes are ambushed on the Rainbow Road and the Mushroom Kingdom stands on the brink of annihilation.

Despite this, the movie also serves up a beautiful message about seeking validation and respect from parents, revealed through the relationships of Donkey Kong and his father, King Cranky Kong, as well as the Mario Brothers and their parents.

While the ending racks up some epic gaming moments, it’s the brothers’ love that should score the most points with audiences. Their courageous stand against Bowser, leading to a victory celebrated by all of Brooklyn, showcases how when love takes flight it always wins.

The Apostle Paul knew all too well that every believer needs to remember what put Jesus’ life and ministry on top of the all-time leaderboard. And he writes this challenge and encouragement for each of us.

“Let all that you do be done in love.” -1 Corinthians 16:14

The Super Mario Brothers movie plants a flag in the ground and invites everyone to live a daring life of adventure, courage, and most of all, love.

Because how terrible would it be to get to the end of it all and find out that what we’re rally looking for was in another castle all along?


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