Monday, 31 December 2012

Film Review: "Wreck-It Ralph" (2012).




"My name's Ralph, and I'm a bad guy… I'm a wrecker… For thirty years I have been doing this… I gotta say, it becomes kinda hard to love your job... when no one else seems to like you for doing it." This is the premise of Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph. This 3D computer-animated family-action comedy film produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. It is the 52nd animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series. The film tells the story of the titular arcade game villain who rebels against his role and dreams of becoming a hero. He travels between games in the arcade, and ultimately must eliminate a dire threat that could affect the entire arcade, and one that Ralph may have inadvertently started.

Wreck-It Ralph contains a number of other video-game references, including characters and visual gags. At the meeting of video-game villains, the above characters include, in addition to any mentioned above: Bowser from the Mario series, Doctor Eggman from Sonic the Hedgehog, and Neff from Altered Beast. Characters from Q*bert, including Q*bert, Coily, Slick, Sam and Ugg, are shown as "homeless" characters and later taken in by Ralph and Felix into their game. Scenes in Game Central Station and Tapper's bar include Chun-Li, Cammy and Blanka from Street Fighter, Pac-Man, Blinky, Pinky, and Inky from Pac-Man, the Paperboy from Paperboy, the two paddles and the ball from Pong, Dig Dug, a Pooka, and a Fygar from Dig Dug, The Qix from Qix, and Frogger from Frogger. The residents of Niceland are animated using a jerky motion that spoofs the limited animation cycles of the sprites of many eight- and sixteen-bit arcade games. Throughout Game Central Station is graffiti stating that "Aerith lives", referencing the character of Aerith Gainsborough from Final Fantasy VII. There is also a reference to the Metal Gear series when Ralph is searching for something in a box and finds the "Exclamation point" (with corresponding sound effect from the game). Mr. Litwik wears a black and white striped referee's shirt, a nod to the iconic outfit of Walter Day, founder of Twin Galaxies, a video arcade game scorekeeping organization. One of songs in the credits is an original work from Buckner and Garcia, previously famous for writing video game-themed songs in the 1980's.

The film features the voices of John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer, and Jane Lynch. John C. Reilly as Wreck-It Ralph, the villain of Fix-It Felix, Jr, was hilarious at times and was also a unintentional caricature as the film's reluctant villain. Sarah Silverman as Vanellope von Schweetz, a little-girl racer and glitch in Sugar Rush was enjoyable enough. Jane Lynch as Sergeant Tamora Jean Calhoun, the lead character of Hero's Duty, was probably the best performance. Finally Alan Tudyk as King Candy was an incredible performance, but was nonetheless a knockoff to the old Mad Hatter character from Alice in Wonderland (1951) played by Ed Wynn.

Wreck-It Ralph is a somewhat dazzling movie from Walt Disney in which games have a world of their own. But here's a rip-off arcade show that is not at all sensational, stylish, or fun.

Simon says Wreck-It Ralph receives:


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