Super Mario Bros. Movie Extended Cut

A group of inexplicably passionate and loyal fans of the box office bomb Super Mario Bros. have released an extended cut of the film that restores 20 minutes of previously unreleased (and at one time, undiscovered) deleted scenes. Because if there’s one thing that people have always said about bad movies, it’s that they wish they were much longer.

You might remember Super Mario Bros.: The Movie Archive, a website that came into possession of a VHS tape from an auction that featured items from the estate of producer Roland Joffé. The tape contained 15 minutes of additional scenes that were not in the movie and were never included in any of the home video releases. They even released one of the clips online. But now they’ve gone one step further and restored all of the once-lost footage back into the movie.

If you head over to Internet Archive, you can watch the Super Mario Bros. movie extended cut, which takes the film’s running time from 104 minutes to 125 minutes. The new footage includes scenes that were completely wiped from the final cut and extended versions of scenes that were trimmed down.  We’re not sure where the extra five minutes of footage came from outside of the previously mentioned VHS tape, but does it really matter? We’re getting 20 extra minutes of one of the most fascinatingly terrible movies ever made.

The big screen adaptation of the Super Mario Bros. video game ruined any chances of Nintendo fans seeing games like Metroid or The Legend of Zelda turned into movies (though that will change soon). The film was a box office bomb in 1993, and it took a totally weird approach to the video game with Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo in the leads as Mario Mario and Luigi Mario (because they’re the Mario brothers). Directors Rocky Morton and Annabel Jankel turned what could have been a major blockbuster franchise for the whole family into a strange, post-apocalyptic, sci-fi sideshow featuring contrived and nonsensical references to the video game. Here’s a refresher:

But Morton and Jankel never really got to make the movie they intended because Disney bought the distribution rights, demanded extensive rewrites, and eventually locked the filmmakers out of the editing room. The result is what we saw on the big screen back in 1993. So could restoring these deleted scenes actually improve upon the theatrical cut of the movie? The post on Internet Archive details some of the new scenes that you’ll find in this extended cut:

Previously-unseen deleted scenes include the Mario Bros running afoul of the (probably Mafia-connected) Scapelli plumbing company, Koopa murdering a technician by de-evolving him into slime, and Iggy and Spike rapping about the overthrow of King Koopa at the Boom Boom Bar. There’s more of Lena, Daniella and the Brooklyn Girls. Most scenes are extended in this version, with a lot more of the cast including Dennis Hopper as Koopa.

These scenes were restored with the help of filmmaker Garrett Gilchrist, who is apparently well-known online for his restoration of The Thief and the Cobbler and a variety of Muppet projects. For what it’s worth, Gilchrist and the fans behind this project think it’s a superior cut of the movie, which leans more into the adult sensibilities that Morton and Jankel were going for originally. I’m still not sure that’s the best approach for a movie based on Super Mario Bros., but maybe that’s just me. Are you willing to spend over two hours revisiting the Super Mario Bros. movie to find out for yourself?

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