- 8 February 2013
- Rich Moore
- Phil Johnston, Jennifer Lee
- John C Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer, Jane Lynch
- Walt Disney Animation Studios
- Running Time:
- 108 minutes
A rat overcomes prejudice and more practical difficulties to become a chef in Pixarâ€™s delightful film
The disgruntled blue-collar working man is somewhat under-represented in the pantheon of childrenâ€™s animation heroes. In telling the story of Wreck-It Ralph, the discontented bad guy of videogame Fix-It Felix, animation veteran Rich Moore (Futurama, The Simpsons) has given his film an intriguing and unusual hook.
Ralphâ€™s (Reilly) 9-5 is wrecking an apartment building and waiting for Fix-It Felix (McBrayer) to come and save the day. At night, he returns to his home on the rubbish tip and watches the rest of the gameâ€™s characters celebrate Felixâ€™s heroism in his penthouse. But Ralph has had enough of being the bad guy and sets out to show everyone that heâ€™s just as important and valuable as Felix.
The first half of Wreck-It Ralph is witty, fresh and eye-catching. Moore isnâ€™t afraid to show Ralphâ€™s rough edges and there are no desperate or crass attempts to keep the younger audience interested while the world of the film is established, with excellent scenes like the Bad Guys Anon meeting showing an admirable commitment to character.
Moore knows that Ralphâ€™s struggle for greater acceptance is one that many kids will be able to relate to. That being said, any kids struggling to concentrate are handsomely rewarded with eye-popping sequences like the battle in Heroâ€™s Duty, an epilepsy-inducing game pitching soldiers against alien bugs. The film is a tribute to beloved arcade games of various eras (itâ€™s packed with references for gamers) and they are each rendered with highly impressive and distinct animation styles.
The sharp script becomes a little blunted at the halfway point when Ralph enters candyland racing game Sugar Rush. Itâ€™s here that he meets Vanelope (Silverman), a plucky little outcast whoâ€™s also set on being accepted by her fellow characters. The relationship between the two is well-written and Reilly and Silvermanâ€™s perfect casting helps no end, but weâ€™re on familiar and slightly saccharine ground by this point.
While the slight slump is disappointing, Wreck-It Ralph is highly enjoyable, occasionally moving, and itâ€™s got a lot of heart.