Monday, November 26, 2012

Quick Blurb Review: Wreck-It Ralph

Okay, this was originally supposed to be a Vlog, but my son and better half are sleeping and I am currently without sufficient recording room, so here we are.  Over the weekend while Scholar was doing stuff with her bridal party in Brandon, I called up my brother and we took my son to the theatre for the first time.  I wanted something that he'd sit through but at the same time was something that my brother and I wouldn't mind or even looked forward to sitting through, so we decided to check out Wreck-It Ralph, the third and final film that was on my "Must See In Theatres" list.

Ralph (John C. Reilly) converses with Vanellope (Sarah Silverman).

The plot of Wreck-It Ralph is almost like Toy Story with video games: Ralph, the villain in the game "Fix-It Felix Jr.", has been doing the same thing for 30 years: wrecking the building while Felix (Jack McBrayer) repairs it before Ralph destroys it completely (like a cross between Donkey Kong & Rampage).  However, Ralph is considered by the tenants of the building to be "just the bad guy" and treat him like dirt at every opportunity, even snubbing him an invite to a party celebrating the game's 30th anniversary.  After attending a Bad Guy Group Therapy session with the likes of Kano (Mortal Kombat), Zangief & M. Bison (Street Fighter), Dr. Eggman (Sonic The Hedgehog) and other recognizable video game villains, Ralph decides that he doesn't want to be the bad guy anymore and sets out to find the game where he can be a hero.  However, by doing so, he puts not only his game but potentially every other game in the arcade at risk.

If Sgt. Marcus Fenix (Gears Of War) and female Commander Sheppard (Mass Effect) had a kid together, it'd be Sgt. Tamora Jean Calhoun (Jane Lynch).

Hm, how can I put this delicately...I loved this movie!  I tried not to let myself get too excited about Wreck-It Ralph because it is a Disney movie and sometimes their formula can become stale and tiresome.  Not that I don't like Disney movies, it's just some work better than others.  Ralph is one that works, both as a fan of Disney films and as someone who grew up with video games.  As a movie, the film looks great both with the animation and the worlds within it.  When you step into Game Central Station for the first time (which to us is just the power bar connecting all the arcade machines together), you get taken aback and you say to yourself, "Wow."  The detail in the game Sugar Rush was very well done with the world (and most of its inhabitants) being made of candy while Hero's Duty looked like what I imagine a cross of Halo and Starcraft would be.  These are the only two other games created for the movie that Ralph ventures into outside of his own (Sugar Rush being the primary location), which is kind of unfortunate because it would've been cool to see Ralph jump into additional well-known games other than the Group Therapy session in Pac-Man and Root Beer Tapper, but when the events unfold within the games, you have so much fun with it that it doesn't matter.

I'd be lying if I didn't say half the fun of this movie was looking for the iconic characters placed within the crowd.

As a retro gamer, the movie is full of nods to classic titles, which made a good chunk of the film a huge nostalgia trip for my brother and I (Konami code FTW!) which was worth admission alone.  Thankfully, Wreck-It Ralph was more than that as it had a lot of heart to it.  There's some scenes in Sugar Rush that really tugs at you involving Ralph and Vanellope that really make you feel for the characters, which is good otherwise this movie would've been an hour and forty minutes of gaming references.  Without going into too much detail, there's one part that'll widen your eyes a bit when Ralph plays a move (forgive the pun) that he knows that he's not going to walk away from and you'll be thinking to yourself, "Wow...Ralph's gonna die."  Granted, this scene isn't as intense as the incinerator scene from Toy Story 3, but when it still makes you have that sort of reaction, then you know you've got a good one on your hands.

I wonder if someone will actually make this game and put it on xBox Live (if it hasn't been done already).  I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

Alright, I think I've said all I wanted to say about this movie.  I didn't really talk about the cast because I don't have a whole lot of experience with the four main actors outside of this movie (I think the last John C. Reilly movie I watched was Gangs Of New York), so now whenever I see anything with them in it, I'm going to know them as these characters.  So, in closing, as a Disney and retro game fan, I had an absolute blast with Wreck-It Ralph and I highly recommend it to everyone.  I tried my best to avoid spoilers in this review because I really do want you to see it for yourself.  If you haven't yet, go check it out.

-The Cynic

P.S. This movie has a somewhat sappy but very heartwarming ending that makes a sequel seem almost...unnecessary.  Would I say no to a sequel, though?  Not likely.

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