Pauls Valley Democrat
Pauls Valley, Oklahoma —
Despite some of the mind boggling corporate decisions by the Walt Disney Mega empire in recent decades, they do still stumble across a product now and again worth getting excited about. No, I’m not talking about the crossover possibilities of Obiwan Goofnobi, but instead what is arguably their most innovative animated project in quite some time.
Much in the same way that “Roger Rabbit” broke copyright barriers to blend competing cartoon personalities or DreamWorks going the fractured fairytale route with the “Shrek” franchise, there’s a new spin brought to a world once only portrayed as the same good or evil. It’s a chance for those like my generation to get a little nostalgic and a way to introduce gaming as it once was to kids who may have only played in front of the television. It’s almost impossible to dislike “Wreck-It Ralph” no matter your background and speaks to those who can relate to wanting to break out of the status quo.
This partial blast from the past welcomes viewers to what it would be like to live life as a characters in arcade games. A world where one is either good or bad for the most part, the primary story focuses on a game called Fix it Felix Jr. (Jack McBrayer) where the the so called villain, Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly) is suffering from an identity crisis.
Ralph has grown tired of spending 30 years smashing up the same old building just so Felix can clean it up and only be rejected for it and one day gets the bright idea that he would like to try being the hero. Despite the total lack of support for changing his lot in life, even in a super villain support group that features characters like Mario’s Bowser or the Clyde the Orange Ghost from PacMan, he risks everything by leaving his game to find glory in others. Along the way, Ralph learns how difficult it will be as he meets a quirky cast of characters that help him redefine his life from emotionally hardened Hero’s Duty character Sergeant Tamora Jean Calhoun (Jane Lynch) to irriratingly sweet Vanellope von Schweetz (Sarah Silverman) from a racing game.
The way it progresses is pure cinematic poetry and you know it’s a winner if you happen to be among an audience that actually applauds when the credits roll. You don’t even really have to be with kids to have an excuse to enjoy it and in said audience I can confirm just as many adult laughs were had that evening in the theater.
In other words, I highly recommend checking this film out and can promise the ticket is worth it with my own plans to consider it a future addition to the DVD library. In fact, I’d say it also deserves at least a best animated feature nomination, right up there with “ParaNorman” and “Brave.” Thus my final verdict for “Wreck-It Ralph” is five out of five bricks.
Movie viewing experience courtesy of the Royal Twin Theater of Pauls Valley.