Wreck-It Ralph finally opens in Europe, so I can review it just in time for the DVD release stateside. But has it been worth the wait?
Rich Moore – Director
John C. Reilly – Ralph
Sarah Silverman – Vanellope
Jack McBrayer – Felix
Jane Lynch – Calhoun
Alan Tudyk – King Candy
Wreck-It Ralph is the bad guy in classic 80’s arcade game Fix-It Felix Jr. Tired of three decades of being disrespected, he leaves his game in an attempt to become a hero elsewhere. As you can imagine, things do not go smoothly
A FUN IDEA
This movie has a very clever idea at the core: Toy Story in the computer game world. It builds this world very well too, allowing the characters from the various games to travel through cables and plugs, so they can interact. It also gives the opportunity for cameos classic game characters, and these are the highlight of the movie. Unfortunately, the rest of the movie doesn’t quite live up to the catchy pitch. However, it’s hard to tell where the movie falls short.
The animation is pretty solid throughout, with the various game styles dictating the animation style: the characters in the Fix-It Felix Jr world move like well rendered 8-bit characters, all jumpy and twitchy; Hero’s Duty is a far more glossy affair; and Sugar Rush is all sugar coated cuteness. The action scenes are well done, particularly the Hero’s Duty action sequence, and the Sugar Rush races which are pretty impressive.
The voices are pretty cool throughout. Reilly gives Ralph some real heart, and makes his plight feel quite real. Lynch is fun as the hard as nails military chick, who is programmed with the most heart-breaking back story ever. McBrayer is great as Felix, and a surprising Tudyk is fun as King Candy. Silverman might be the weak link here. She is good, and funny, and all that you would expect. The problem is that, at times, she is trying too hard to be adorable and cute, forcing it too much, and as a result it comes across as diabetes-inducingly sweet, which doesn’t quite work.
The main failing of the movie is that the story is a little too thin. It isn’t that it is a bad story, it’s mainly that there isn’t that much to it. Pixar movies tend to have simple enough tales, however there are layers and unexpected moments that keep it from feeling too straightforward. Unfortunately, this movie doesn’t quite have that. And while the climax is pretty cool, the meaningful message is a little ham-fistedly handled.
BOTTOM LINE: NOT PIXAR, BUT NOT BAD
So…this is a good movie, but it is far from a classic. As I said at the beginning, the concept is better than the resultant movie. However, there are still plenty of laughs, and cameo/character analogue watching is fun.
DID YOU SEE THIS MOVIE? RATE IT!