Lets face it; most of us, if not all of us have dabbled with videogames at some point. Even if you haven’t and don’t know your joystick from your joypad you’ll have heard of the likes of Pacman, Sonic, Mario, Streetfighter and so on. Unfortunately over the years, video games that have been the inspiration for movies have ranged from rubbish to septic. But now, thanks to Wreck-It Ralph that trend has changed in a smashing big way. Finally, the words video games and movie can go together without people cringing, running away or feeling a little queasy.
Wreck-It Ralph has been knocking around Disney since the 80’s where it had the working title of High Score. Fast forward to the late 90’s and that changed to Joe Jump. Mid 00’s it was titled Reboot Ralph and now, as you can imagine, it’s called Wreck-It Ralph.
Ralph is quite a large bad guy who lives inside an arcade game called Fix-It Felix Jr. He spends his days wrecking a building while Felix Jr. spends his days repairing it. Players in the outside world take control of Felix and his magical fixing hammer. When the arcade closes, Ralph goes to live in his mound of bricks and Felix and the building inhabitants all celebrate another good day…at the office. Ralph though, yearns to not be the bad guy, but to be an actual a hero and get himself a highly prized hero medal and prove that he’s a good guy. So he decides to game jump and arrives in Hero’s Duty on his medal quest. From here he ends up in Sugar Rush (a Mario kart style racer) and must help out Vanellope von Schweetz (Sarah Silverman) and basically save the video game world.
Voiced by John C. Reilly, Ralph is an instantly likeable character. From his oversized arms to his general awkwardness, there’s alot to like about our bad guy wannabe hero. He’s quite the contrast to Vanellope von Schweetz who is about as cute as you could get anywhere. Silverman plays the whole cutey thing up, to no end, and von Schweetz has a number of moments that will not only make you laugh but will melt your heart at the same time. Fresh from page duties at 30 Rock, Jack McBrayer lends his vocal talents to Fix-It Felix, who like his animated co-stars is highly likeable and delivers some great moments.
Speaking of moments, Wreck-It Ralph is brimming with them. As an old school gamer, the first few minutes brought me back to my childhood in the blink of an eye. From Street Fighter to Pacman the amount of video game references here is simply staggering. The one that really got me though, was Tapper, one of my most idolised games as a kid. Anyway, enough of my nostalgia, Wreck-It Ralph has so many touches and moments from the multitude of video game characters it warrants a second and possibly third look to spot them all. Even the way way the Ghosts from Pacman move around the screen, it’s simply amazing. The level of detail as well as time and effort put in here shows an immense level of care from Disney. Everything is as it should be. It’s staggering!
No matter what your age, there’s more than enough here for everybody but younger audiences will really relish the worlds of Hero’s Duty and Sugar Rush (even if it is a little bit too sickly looking for my liking). From start to finish, humour and jokes abound and it really shows that Rich Moore has created an almost perfect balance of a movie suited to adults and kids alike.
It’s incredibly difficult to find fault with Wreck-It Ralph. Visually it looks fantastic, it’s characters are incredibly likeable and it wears it’s heart well and thoroughly on its oversized arms. An absolute must see and something you will definitely press the start button on again and again! Gametastic! Highly Recommended!