Wreck-It Ralph is the 52nd animated feature by Disney. It is directed by Rich Moore who previously directed episodes of The Simpsons and Futurama. Being a huge fan of video games, I was excited about this movie since it was announced.
The plot follows Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly), a video game villain who presides in the game Fix-It Felix, Jr. The hero of the game is Felix, who fixes the damage Ralph does in the video game. Ralph is ostracized by the other characters of the game and decides that he’s had enough of being a villain. Video game characters in Wreck-It Ralph have the ability to leave their games when no humans are around. Ralph goes on a journey to find a hero’s medal by traveling to a different game. He does this so that he can prove his worth to the other characters of Fix-It Felix, Jr. He travels into two games, Hero’s Duty and Sugar Rush. Hero’s Duty is an obvious nod to the Call of Duty series. There he meets Sergeant Calhoun (voiced by Jane Lynch). Her double entendre insults, “come on your pussy willows” and “move your molasses” were both funny and surprising. The majority of the movie takes place in Sugar Rush, a nod to the Mario Kart series. I thought this was one of the flaws of the movie. It would have been interesting to see other games and not be stuck in one world for the majority of the runtime. In Sugar Rush, he meets Vanellope Von Schweetz (voiced by Sarah Silverman). Vanellope is a character who I found slightly irritating at first, but as the film went on she grew on me more and more.
The nods to video games were a great addition to the film and got me really excited. Seeing characters such as Bowser, Pac-Man, and Q-Bert was an absolute treat. References such as the “exclamation point” from the Metal Gear Solid series were amazing. The best thing about the movie is the fact that it’s quite touching. They build the relationship between Vanellope and Ralph effectively, which makes you care about what happens to them in the end.
The voice work by the whole cast is great and the animation is astounding. The video game worlds really come to life through the beautiful animation. You can really see the amount of work that was put into it. The film is touching and heartfelt, with some great lessons and video game references. With movies like Tangled (2010) and Wreck-It Ralph, Disney has really proven that they can still make great movies.