Wreck-it Ralph Reviews
Over this quandry is an animated love-in visit to vid games of old, which helps to soften the sensitive subject matter. Pretty damn good if you ask me.
The character we follow is the titular Wreck-It Ralph, a bad guy in a game that is mainly a mix of Donkey Kong and Rampage. Ralph is tired of being seen as just a bad guy, and dreams of being respected, both in general, but also as the hero he knows he can be. Fed up with his life, he sets out to prove he's a hero after all, but his intentions might be more devastating than he realizes. I won't get into the reasons why his actions might be so troubling, because it's just more than I can to explain right now, and is part of the fun anyway.
In broad strokes, the plot and the message are really nothing new, but this is a very fun and clever variation on a theme. It's mostly aimed at a younger audience, but there's some references that are directly aimed for older viewers, especially those with a gaming background.
Like Who Framed Roger Rabbit, this film brings together a massive collection of characters from competing companies. Not everyone is here, but the roster they get is still pretty impressive. Unlike the aforementioned Roger Rabbit film, this one doesn't quite go far enough with the concept or do as much as they can, but even then, it's still amazing to see so many recognizable game characters interacting with one another, especially since the focus is on retro gaming, and really taps into nostalgia...even though it adds a contemporary twist.
The casting is dead on, and the characters really match the likeness of those people voicing them. John C. Reilly is great as Ralph, and you really come to sympathize with him and relate to him being misunderstood. As his in-game nemesis Fix-It Felix, Jack McBrayer is solid, if predictable as the cheerful and sweetly naive goodie. The casting of Jane Lynch as the lead in a Call of Duty/Halo/Gears of War style game is likewise on the nose, but still a lot of fun. Then we get Sarah Silverman as an outcast 'glitch' in a racing game that's a cross between Candy Land and Mario Kart. The character, like the actress, can be quite annoying, but if you're into her shtick, then it's not really a problem.
I really loved the concept here, and especially the clever way they establish the world building and rules that the game character must follow. It's pretty funny, and makes me wonder what it would be like if the scenario proposed here were real. The game jumping is also neat, but it's a let down that there wasn't more of it, as I thought there might be.
The film is very bright, colorful, and really vibrant. It's visually delightful, and the action is crisp and fast. The slower character scenes are also good, even if they're a retread of things we've seen many times over.
The film has a nice mix of heart, humor, and emotions, even if it might be a tad overkill at times, especially with the schmaltz. All in all though, I really liked it, even if it wasn't all that fresh or innovative.
I'm bias, being a 90's gamer myself the culture was hitting all the right notes for me but honestly it's a fine film regardless. The animation and art direction is incredibly aware of it's source material and does such a wonderful job showing homage.
When I first finished the film I was disappointed to not see more "game hopping" and that the supporting characters could've played more sophisticated roles in the main casts development. However, the former would have just turned the movie into a thoughtless montage of references.
Also, I feel that the theme of Ralph's character, of the world NEEDING there to be a "bad guy" wasn't as well explored as it should have been and was ultimately overshadowed/morphed into more rudimentary/boring themes of loneliness and self actualization that embodied Vanellope.
Sure, he's no Ozymandias from Watchmen but it would have been really nice to see him actually accept villainy as a path to righteousness that was more profound than smashing a go-cart.
PS. PHENOMENAL voice acting, Silverman, Lynch and Brayer were truly, truly amazing.
PPS. The music too! I've never heard such wonderful 16bit based songs, Jackman outdid himself. Skrillex's Bug hunt was great too.
The film tells the story of Wreck-It Ralph, the antagonist of the arcade game. Fix-It Felix, Jr. After thirty years of wrecking buildings in his game, Ralph longs for recognition and respect. Ralph then decides to leave his game and journey into the worlds of Hero's Duty and Sugar Rush where he hopes to make a hero out of himself. However, Ralph's journey causes something that puts the arcade in danger.
Wreck-It Ralph was a film I was looking forward to ever since I heard about the film's premise and it did not disappoint one bit. The film was thoroughly entertaining and there was a lot to like about it. The characters are fun to watch, the story is entertaining, and the humor is great. I love the world that the writers and animators created. The way the characters can jump from one game to another is creative and I love the design of Game Central Station, the transportation center that takes you to different games. The games that were created for the film were creative as well. I like how Fix-It Felix, Jr. had an 8-bit Nintendo approach and Sugar Rush had 3D Nintendo 64 approach. Hero's Duty had the look of a modern first-person shooter game with realistic looking graphics and lots of detail on the characters' armor. I enjoyed the unique look of each look. The animation is wonderful and colorful. The characters in Fix-It Felix moved and walked like they would in a game which I thought was cool. The Sugar Rush world was also impressive. It looked so good that I could almost taste it! The animation and design of the film were a joy to see. Big props to Disney.
Wreck-It Ralph is a well written film. The script is humorous and heartfelt. The film had plenty of jokes to entertain kids and adults. There were some parts that did have me busting up. The characters in the film are great as well. Ralph is a pretty relatable character. We all sometimes feel misunderstood and wish we can prove to be something more. Vannelope von Schweetz, a character Ralph meets in Sugar Rush, was entertaining. She was funny and adorable. Her character gets more fleshed out as the film progressed and I started to care for her. Her and Ralph had a great friendship and there was a scene involving them that made my heart feel heavy. I liked the Fix-It Felix and Sergeant Calhoun characters. Fix-It Felix was a nice, good-mannered character while Sergeant Calhoun was tough and hard-as-nails but still had feelings.
Not one of the voice actors in the film were miscast. John C. Reilly's voice fit Ralph perfectly. He had a tough guy voice but still managed to be innocent and nice. Sarah Silverman did a great job as Vannelope. She can be annoying to some but I enjoyed her. I can't stand Jack McBrayer as an actor but I think he's a good voice actor. He did well as Fix-It Felix. The entertaining Jane Lynch also does a great job as Sergeant Calhoun. Alan Tudyk did a good job as King Candy, the ruler of Sugar Rush. I also enjoyed Mindy Kaling as Taffyta, Vannellope's rival. It was weird to see Kaling play such a stuck u p brat unlike her goofy role on The Office. There a some sweet cameos from video game characters in the film. I enjoyed Bower from Super Mario Bros.' cameo as well as Sonic the Hedgehog's. I also liked seeing Dr. Robotnik and Kano from Mortal Kombat. Dubstep musician, Skrillex, makes a cameo and I thought that was cool. I'm a big fan of his music. He also made an awesome song for the film that plays during one of the Hero's Duty scenes.
I loved Wreck-It Ralph. The animation was stellar , the characters were memorable, good story, the voice acting was great, and it was filled with so much humor, charm, and energy. There's lot of nostalgia here for fans of classic games and a lot for modern gamers to appreciate. Wreck-It Ralph is a lot of fun. Disney has crafted a film that is entertaining to audiences both young and old.
"That's not the blunt-force trauma, ma'am, that's just the honey glow in my cheeks. "
Very good animated movie! Wreck-It Ralph is really wonderfully created. Its visual design is brilliant and its action pieces pretty amazing. The world it builds, and all of the little details from various video games, is pretty wonderful to look at and experience. Even some characters move in the precise way they actually do in video games. But what makes this gloriously colorful spectacle of a world work is the screenplay. The jokes hit all the right places, the characters are all lively and written with skill that goes beyond what we have come to expect from a simple kids' film like this. The few commercials and trailers I saw had been sure to let audiences know just how "pretty" this film looked, but what makes it a truly great film is that it has a great story and great dialogue to back up the visuals. Overall, the film follows a clear pattern and formula for kids, but the real surprise is that none of it made me roll my eyes or cringe. It's incredibly entertaining and enjoyable for anyone. Pretty much everything is done in a very respectable manner, and the film hits greatness in the writing, direction, voice performances, and visual design. Highly recommended.
Wreck-It Ralph longs to be as beloved as his game's perfect Good Guy, Fix-It Felix. Problem is, nobody loves a Bad Guy. But they do love heroes... so when a modern, first-person shooter game arrives featuring tough-as-nails Sergeant Calhoun, Ralph sees it as his ticket to heroism and happiness. He sneaks into the game with a simple plan -- win a medal -- but soon wrecks everything, and accidentally unleashes a deadly enemy that threatens every game in the arcade. Ralph's only hope? Vanellope von Schweetz, a young troublemaking "glitch" from a candy-coated cart racing game who might just be the one to teach Ralph what it means to be a Good Guy. But will he realize he is good enough to become a hero before it's "Game Over" for the entire arcade?
Just to see the poster for this film is glorious, the classically designed 80's style arcade front that clearly homages games like the original 'Donkey Kong' and maybe 'Rampage' is beautiful. Even the title of the film is perfect, the team behind this film have really hit the nail on the head.
For a fictional game 'Wreck-It Ralph' is beautifully designed and could so easily be a real game. The character sprites of 'Fix-It Felix Jr' ('Donkey Kong Jr'?) and 'Turbo' in 'TurboTime' ('Rally-X'?) are also well done.
The plot isn't as simplistic as you would imagine either. Obviously it involves a struggle against a villain but the writing team have cleverly used the common problem of old game glitches, hacking (not so much old school with this of course) or 'crashing' alongside the more typical rescue theme. I also loved how they went about creating the whole videogame world underneath (or behind) those trusty old arcade cabinets. Using the cables as a kind of subway portal to a main hub where all characters go to relax or meet, a huge videogame central station.
I can't deny I've often thought about how worlds like this might or could exist/work if you wanted to make a film centered around a videogame universe. Same with how you would create a world/universe which incorporated every cartoon character ever.
I loved everything I saw in this game, almost. The visuals of course are top notch CGI as expected but I'm referring to the mix of old school and new gen videogame worlds, characters and styles. All characters have a modern CGI sheen but they still keep their traditional artistic style somewhat. But its the little things that really made me smile, the sound effects for one, small touches that bring everything together. All those legendary pings, rings, dings, power up's and extra life sounds and are all in place for the various characters.
Also loved how in the old 8-bit style game sequences everything has a pixelated edge...just like the games. Nice use of a classic Nintendo D-pad tucked away in there too, why not more from Nintendo in this?.
When 'Sonic' gets hit he spills a load of rings everywhere, 'Clyde' the ghost from 'Pacman' hovers as he should and has those classic 8-bit effects when he goes blue, 'Q*bert' sprites are as you remember them including balloon speech, the 'Wreck-It Ralph' sprites all move in a jerky limited way just like old 8-bit sprites and there are many small cameos from game characters ranging from back in the day to present day. In fact I'm sure many young folk watching won't have a clue who some of them are.
This is all boosted even more with lovely little real in-game sequences from a few games like 'Pacman' and 'Tapper'...which I was so pleased to see. Oh my 'Tapper' or 'Root Beer Tapper' was one of those old school games that spawned a huge following of fans and copies, you would find it in bars for heavens sake!. Makes you wish they still had those dark dingy mist filled arcades chock full of those wonderful cabinets.
The only criticism that hit me whilst watching, which is more a constructive artistic difference of opinion really, is the lack of real game environments. In other words, how much cooler would this film had been if the 'game zone' of 'Heroes Duty' was actually 'Halo' or 'COD'. Or if the game zone of 'Sugar Rush' had been 'Mariokart' both with all their gameworld characters. I realise its a small moan and copyrights I'm sure came into play hugely but seriously!!! how fudging awesome would that have been!!!!?? makes me dribble at the thought of it.
The other thing was, 'Vanellope' still has her glitch 'skill' at the end, so how come that's not seen as a game fault causing it to be 'out of order'?. Oh and 'King Candy' looks and sounds like 'The Mad Hatter' from 'Disney's Alice in Wonderland'.
My imagination was running wild whilst watching this film and long after. I wanted there to be more characters, more sprites, more worlds, more classic sound effects etc...just more input from various giant videogame companies. The last film to make me feel like this (slightly) was 'Scott Pilgrim' and all the nice little videogame touches that had. Before that you gotta go way back to the cartoon 'Captain N: The Game Master' which was a Nintendo fueled awesome fest (look it up).
This animated film has so much win in it I simply can't include it all. Yes a major part of me liking this is because I'm looking at it through some pretty darn thick rose tinted specs but everyone my age will be the same (if you played videogames). Just like 'Toy Story' the film taps into a long distant loving childhood memory and brings it all flooding back. Not even a childhood memory seeing as I'm sure many still play but the retro appeal here is as strong as an iron girder. Makes you wonder why it hasn't been done before.
Did I see 'Sub-Zero' in this or just a character like him?. Oh stick around for the end credits as they are nicely done also.
'Right here. I'm Zangief, I'm bad guy'
The game is called "Fix-It Felix Jr." and it's been around since the early days of video games, the Pac Man days. The premise of the game is simple, Wreck-It Ralph is removed from his home so that some high-rise apartments for rich people may be built. He comes back to get revenge by smashing up the building. The player then plays as Fix-It Felix and undoes all the damage caused by Wreck-It Ralph. Ralph is defeated and is relegated to living in the city dump. Obviously, a game this fun has stood the test of time, and it is still being played in the same arcade in the same spot to this day. However, Wreck-It Ralph is beginning to have doubts about his life. He wants some of the adulation Felix gets, or at least to have friends who talk to him every once in awhile, and decides to do something heroic in order to prove he's just as good and deserving as anyone. He sets off on an adventure, traveling to other video games and meeting other characters along the way.
It would be just as easy to be lazy with a movie like Wreck-It Ralph and make something by-the-numbers that panders to little kids. But Wreck-It Ralph isn't lazy, it's vibrant and full of fun. John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer and Jane Lynch all play their parts with gusto and it's wonderful to see the characters bouncing off one another. Wreck-It Ralph is a genuinely entertaining movie.
Sarah Silverman - yes, the one who makes racist jokes charmingly - makes this film; in fact, I'd venture to say that I didn't find the film at all compelling until her Vaneliope von Schweetz appeared with Silverman's acid-tongued sweetness. John C. Reilly has hapless down pat, and he's perfect for Wreck-It Ralph.
The story is basic, kids film fare, a story of redemption and good guys being good. The video game references are fun for insiders, and the little details like Pac-Man's cherries and Q-Bert's down-and-out disposition make for a few chuckles.
Overall, as animated family films go, this is one of the better ones.