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Wreck-It Ralph’ Nostalgic Fun for All

Ankur Chawla | Tuesday, November 13, 2012

“Wreck-It Ralph” is Disney Animation’s latest feature film following an arcade villain of the same name. The movie is a genuine and well-developed story of finding oneself and identity outside of the labels placed on us. At the same time, “Wreck-It Ralph” is an ode to gamers and retro video games, spotlighting beloved characters like Sonic, Q-bert and Pac-man.
Regardless of any preconceived notions of how Disney will handle the beloved “Star Wars” franchise, their incredible use of licensed games and characters in “Wreck-It Ralph” is certainly a good sign. Overall, the movie, in typical Disney fashion, is a good-hearted feel-good movie that has enough humor and allusions to appeal to kids and adults alike.
The movie’s namesake, Ralph, is a typical arcade “bad guy” whose days consist of smashing the same building of condos while Fix-It Felix Jr. uses his magic hammer to repair any of Ralph’s wreckage.
After a long day’s work of wrecking, Ralph heads home to the neighborhood dump filled with broken bricks and his stump. On the game’s 30th anniversary, and after being left out of the party the other characters were throwing, Ralph becomes fed up with being a bad guy and just once wants to be the hero.
Moving from game to game, Ralph tries to find a good fit where he can in fact be a hero, win that shiny medal and be accepted in his own game as a friend and member of society. In the process, Ralph goes to a Halo-esque military combat game and a polar opposite candy-coated go-kart racing game.
Filled with puns and references to games from our past, “Wreck-It Ralph” is sure to become a Disney classic. John C. Reilly is the voice of Ralph and puts on a performance on par with his from “Step Brothers.” While not personally the biggest fan of Sarah Silverman and her typically juvenile humor, her character Vanellope suited her persona well, of course with a fair share of “doody” jokes.
It would be tough to find a better person to play the intense female military commander than Jane Lynch, but the character’s romantic encounters with Jack McBrayer’s Fix-It Felix Jr. are beyond awkward. Still, the casting as a whole was surprisingly great for the movie.
It should not take much to convince one to watch a vintage heart-warming Disney movie, and “Wreck-It Ralph” is no break from the tradition. Using retro gaming and classic characters as vehicles in the movie only adds to the story and provides more than enough for the college-aged viewer to feel nostalgic about. Be sure to take your little brothers and sisters to see it when you go home for the Thanksgiving holiday – you won’t be disappointed.
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