Review By: Colby A. Martin
Director: Rich Moore
Phil Johnston (screenplay) and
Jennifer Lee (screenplay)
John C. Reilly additional story material
“I’m gonna wreck it!”
The thought of my favorite pastimes coming together brought m feelings of joy and eagerness. For the first time in years I was excited for a movie release. This is something I’ve either come to terms with, or due to my age I’ve lost interest in movies that don’t contain some sort of realistic or historical value. The truth is, I prefer biographies, historical interpretations or documentaries over animated children’s movies. However, with Wreck-It Ralph the fond childhood memories of arcades, movies, and art style are present.
Let’s put it this way, “Wreck-It Ralph” is easy to fall in love with. It’s a story of classic “bad-guy-wants-to-be-loved” but can never shake his reputation. It’s like every classic villain who wants to be popular or loved so they do bad things, except Ralph (John C. Reilly) in this instance doesn’t want to do bad things. Unfortunately he’s been programmed to be the bad guy in “Fix-it Felix”. “Fix-it Felix” is a game that similarly reminded me of Rampage or similar style games from the past. Ralph goes up the building crashing and bashing it only for Felix, Jr.(Jack McBrayer) to come along and fix it window by window. If Felix is successful, he’s rewarded a shiny gold medal as Ralph is tossed from the building. This game and outcome is the sole reason Ralph is struggling with his role and is the background of the entire movie.
Each of the main characters come from various arcade games throughout the arcade, and with the exception of a few of the “human’s” in the arcade the rest of the characters come strictly from the games. The characters are all friends, they have emotions, and each character plays a vital role in the arcade games. Ralph is a big, strong, villain who deep down appears to have a big heart. Ralph goes to meetings about being the bad guy and how he needs to accept it. Similar to how many people go to anonymous meetings in life, the meetings consist of people with similar stories who sit around and discuss their issues.
Other characters are met later in the movie, but feature the commander of a group of an army sent out to fight off a bug invasion. She’s witty, angry, and is out to seek revenge on the bugs. There’s other characters from various video games including a favorite of mine, Qbert. Not to mention the characters who come in at the biggest plot point in the movie. These characters are various racers in the game Sugar Rush. It’ s a nifty little go-kart racing game placed in a sugary world. The biggest character developed in this game is Vanellope (Sarah Silverman), who is considered a glitch and has been removed from most of the game. She’s witty, funny, cute, and charming. She’s the opposite of Ralph, and she brings the best of Ralph out.
As previously mentioned, “Wreck-It Ralph” is a story of the bad guy wanting to be the good guy. Ralph gets so tired of being the bad guy that he finally want’s to be recognized. But when he tries to join Felix, Jr for his 30th Anniversary of the game, the people of the building run Ralph out and tell him he’ll never amount to anything. So Ralph, heads over to Tapper (Yes, Tapper like the game where you serve beer…or root beer, whichever you want to say it is) to have a few drinks. There he meets a marine who seems to be having a bit of a rough time being the new hit game. So Ralph, taking matters into his own hands, ties up the marine and sneaks into his game. Here Ralph goes a little “Turbo” and starts trying to become the hero in the game. He gets into the way, causes problems, and when Felix, Jr comes to find him, Ralph finally gets his medal. But getting this medal comes with consequences that leads him to Sugar Rush.
Once in Sugar Rush, the true colors of Ralph really begin to come out. We begin to really see how good Ralph can be, and start to learn if he can be a hero or not. His interactions with apparently evil King Candy (Alan Tudyk) and Vanellope show the quality of his character, and defines the rest of the story.
There’s a lot of plot twists that come up after Ralph hits Sugar Rush. I won’t spoil those for you since “Wreck-It Ralph” just hit theaters his week, but I’ll just tell you some of these twists are predictable and obvious. While that takes away from the movie, it leaves for a solid Disney movie that leaves you feeling happy and full of hope. “Wreck-It Ralph” does little to define itself in the genre, but it does leave you with a positive taste. It’s fun, it’s witty it’s a nod to the classic gaming crowd, and most importantly it’s a story of hope and joy. It’s easy to see why “Wreck-It Ralph” is the top movie this weekend.
We’re going to give “Wreck-It Ralph” a Backlogged Gaming and Entertainment current movie high-score of 4.5 out of 5 (Excellent). While it’s not a standout like “Toy Story“, “Wreck-It-Ralph” does everything right and is extremely satisfying. I “Wreck-It Ralph” staying at the top of the charts for another week or two until both Skyfall and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 hit theaters. At that point, one or both of those movies will “wreck” Ralph’s success.