Super Mario movie turns 20, Banjo turns 15, you are old and will die alone

by John "ANC" Barnes on

Donkey Kong Country turns 20 next year oh God what have I done with my life

This past week marked a couple of arbitrary Nintendo anniversaries that seem neat because human beings have ten fingers. Super Mario Bros.: The Movie, the first in a trend of big-screen adaptations of video games, head-bashed its way into theaters and subsequently into our hearts on May 28th, 1993. The movie wove a tale of dinosaurs evolving in a secret alternate dimension, incidentally arriving two weeks before Jurassic Park. Guess which one was sold out on the Saturday in June that my dad took me to the theater. Guess who still had a good time.

Guess which movie doesn’t have a Blu-ray release 🙁

Also this week, on May 31st, 1998, Banjo-Kazooie debuted on the Nintendo 64. Rare’s 3D platformer essentially took the gameplay formula established by Super Mario 64, souped it up with a bunch of humor and new mechanics, coated it all in colorful graphics, and set it to an appropriately cartoony and catchy soundtrack from Grant Kirkhope that dynamically and seamlessly shifted the arrangement of the tunes depending on what section of a level the player was in (e.g. going from a bright, loud version with steel drums and percussion to a mellower strings-and-winds flavor when diving underwater). Also, you could poop out eggs with an accompanying fart sound effect and that was hilarious. Truly one of the greatest games in the Nintendo 64’s heyday.